The Trinidad Guardian / A performance appraisal of Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and his Government and the date of the planned nationwide shutdown.

These are just two of the main topics that will be addressed today when 17 trade unions and non-government organisations gather at Charlie King Junction in Fyzabad for the annual Labour Day celebrations to mark the 81st year since the Butler Oilfield Riots.

Commenting on today’s activities yesterday, Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU) chief education and research officer Ozzi Warwick said, “What people can expect for sure is a performance appraisal of the Government and the Prime Minister.

“People can expect trade progressive trade union style when we will be calling a spade a spade. We will be holding the government accountable on behalf of the people and there will be an announcement.”

Warwick did not want to say what the announcement is, but speaking at the recent May Day celebrations OWTU president general Ancel Roget had given notice that on Labour Day he will announce the date of their planned nationwide shutdown.

The Employers Consultative Association of Trinidad and Tobago (ECA) meanwhile diverted from the traditional Labour Day message to make a clarion call for social partners to focus attention on one of the most challenging occurrences we are witnessing in the world of work in this decade – artificial intelligence (AI), automation, robotics and digitisation to the world of work.

According to the ECA, this new phenomenon presents an ideal opportunity for labour to once again take a leading role in initiating this conversation as a matter of urgency, through available tripartite mechanisms, with open, honest and respectful conversations.

“Now is not the time for any of us as social partners, whether business, Government or labour, to continue passing blame, laying criticisms and demonstrating an unwillingness to take ownership and be held accountable for the future success of our enterprises, our nation and its citizens. The ECA’s message this year is for tripartite partners to focus on collaboration and outcomes – not blame, with a commitment to a sense of purpose so as to arrive at a consensus in the best interest of our people and the for the development of our nation.”

TODAY’S LABOUR DAY ACTIVITIES

5 am – Butler Classics – 20K WALK – STARTS @ OWTU, San Fernando 5.30 am – Butler Classics – 20K RUN – STARTS @ OWTU, San Fernando 6 am – Butler Classics 5K Junior’s Race – STARTS @ Jovan’s Grocery, Harris Village, South Oropouche 8 am – Wreath Laying Ceremonies at Tubal Uriah Butler’s grave site, Apex Cemetery, Fyzabad & La Brea

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