Domestic Workers, through the Non-Governmental Organization, Red Thread,on March 6, 2018 had a special meeting with the Minister within the Ministry of Social Protection –Keith Scott. The meeting was held to inform the Labour Department of the difficulties employees experience with their employers in view of a collaborative to improve same.
Among some of the issues raised were sexual harassment, general non-compliance with labour laws, non- payment of wages and improper treatment of employees.
Minister Scott in addressing these issues noted his department continues to enforce strict compliance measures with employers for the protection of the rights of all workers and will address all grievances in due process. The Minister maintains that laws must be upheld and the authority of the Department of Labour respected.
As a result of the engagement with Red Thread, an immediate meeting was held with senior labour functionaries and labour officers where issues arising out of the engagement with the NGO were discussed in an effort to arrive at amicable solutions to strengthen the relationship among workers, NGOs and the Government.
“I applaud the work that Red Thread has been doing from its inception. It is an example that somebody can stand up, not only for women but generally for the disadvantaged and vulnerable in the society. For too long the disadvantaged and vulnerable did not have a voice and it is commendable to see organizations partnering with the Government to give recognition and support to those persons” Minister Scott said.
Red Thread is an organization that provides services to women and children who have been exploited in unequal power relations, and works assiduously to correct same. The NGO operates a Drop in Center for those persons affected by Labour Issues.
Ms. Karen de Souza – Coordinator of the NGO, said her organization is working to further strengthen relations with the Government and also establish the parameters in which her NGO should operate. She said she welcomes the engagement with the Minister where her organization was able to state its concerns as well as specific grievances. She is optimistic and very confident that these concerns will be meaningfully addressed in the near future.