BELMOPAN, Thurs. Oct. 15, 2015–Amandala readers will recall that October 6 was the date that had been set for a meeting between the president of the University of Belize, Alan Slusher, and the University of Belize Faculty and Staff Association (UBFSA) core team led by Fermin Olivera, who was elected president of UBFSA on September 30.
The meeting took place as scheduled and Slusher promised to respond to their request for a 14% salary increase by October 14.
What has changed is that Olivera has since resigned effective October 9. Olivera did not go into details; however, he said that his resignation was due to “proper procedure” not being followed by the union.
Harrison Flowers, vice-president of the UBFSA, said that the UB president is out of the country; however, an email which was sent to them on October 14 from the university’s Director of Human Resources, Herta Gentle, stated that the faculty and staff of UB will receive a 5% salary increase. The email stated that this is not a counter-offer, because the specified salary increase was already in the pipeline. Further, it stated that the 5% increase had been approved since August 1, 2015, but that it would take effect on their next payday.
Flowers said that since Tuesday, the UB’s faculty and other staff have been on a go-slow. Flowers added that today the UBFSA sent the UB president another letter and at least 85% of the Belmopan faculty and staff staged a sickout. All this was done to get the president to begin dialogue with persons who are able to approve the increase they requested.