Basseterre, St. Kitts, June 02, 2022 (SKNIS): The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis is leading a multi-sectoral response to assist 147 employees of Kajola Kristada, who will become redundant following the imminent closure of the manufacturing plant.
A transition team was established by the Department of Labour to manage the process of retooling, retraining and reassigning interested workers, who will be displaced by the plant’s closure. Minister of Labour, the Honourable Wendy Phipps, said that the transition team for Kajola Kristada workers comprises the Labour Commissioner and others from the Department of Labour; along with representatives from the Ministry of Social Services; the Department of Gender Affairs; the National Skills Training Programme, the Skills Training Empowerment Programme (STEP), and the Women’s Employment and Entrepreneurship and Financial Inclusion Project. Also represented on the team are officials from St. Kitts and Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce Manufacturing Division; St. Kitts and Nevis Trades and Labour Union, and Kajola Kristada.
“We have chosen a deliberate path of ensuring that the transitioning of the workers follows that path of tripartism as outlined by the International Labour Organization (ILO),” said Minister Phipps at the June 01, press conference by the Federal Cabinet.
Workers who qualify for severance payments from the government were assured that all statutes will be “handled properly as per the provisions of the Protection of Employment Act.” Additionally, the management of Kajola Kristada has guaranteed that they will also make a gratuitous payment to their workers.
Minister Phipps thanked the leadership of the manufacturing plant for this guarantee that will greatly benefit the affected employees. She noted that this was consistent with the excellent reputation that Kajola Kristada has earned during its 20 plus year history in St. Kitts and Nevis.
“We recognize that the loss of a job is something that can be traumatic, and as a result of that, we have chosen to incorporate within all of this the psycho-social support that will be required,” the Minister of Labour added. “… We are trying our very best to see where we can do retooling and reequipping and also job readiness support in other forms to ensure that we get these individuals back to work as soon as possible.”
Exit interviews with the workers of Kajola Kristada will begin this week.
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