Public Employees Asked to Take 18 Percent Wage Cut
The United Steelworkers Union (USW) asserts the Senate’s passage of the Virgin Islands Economic Stability Act of 2011 (VIESA) is a potentially illegal action and that it opposes Governor John deJongh, Jr.’s signing of the legislation into law.
In a June 30 letter to Governor deJongh, USW District 9 Director Daniel Flippo wrote: “It is our position the government’s action violates Chapter 25, Section 532 of the statute, which provides that employees with one or more years of service shall be dismissed without prejudice and given the right to re-employment. The Bill of Rights contained in Section 3 of the Revised Organic Act further provides that no law shall be enacted that deprives any person of life, liberty or property without due process. Further, no law shall be enacted that impairs the obligations of contract.”
USW represents more than 1,500 U.S. Virgin Islands government employees and has 16 collective bargaining agreements with the territorial government. These employees work in all areas of the government, such as the police department, Bureau of Motor Vehicles and the Departments of Finance, Agriculture and Tourism ... more