Categorized | Featured, National News

Post Office Workers Strike

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IMG_4980 2Shouting “they have the gold we have the mold,” employees of the general post office took to the streets yesterday to protest the working conditions they say are hazardous to their health.

Rat infestation, heat from a broken air-condition and alleged rashes from handling mail are just a few of the problems the workers were protesting.

Some of the employees said they have already experienced health issues amounting in large doctor bills.

Post office worker Sharon Rolle said, “we’re working among rats and snakes. We are tired of this, enough is enough.”

Another employee, Lauren Bethell said, “since last year April I was hospitalized with a collapsed lung due to the mold infestation. From then to now, I am still going to the doctor  with mounting a medical bills and with conditions worsening. One week supply of medication is $96.”

Bethell said there has been no help, compensation or concern shown for the  medical well being of the employees.

She said that though persons say mold does little harm, the effects are lasting as some of the employees are experiencing; hair loss, dizziness and other challenges.

She said she was present to protest to show support so that other persons won’t go through the same thing.

Danielle Watkins said she came to work normal yesterday morning, but by mid morning she was covered in red, itchy blotches.

“I  have been to the doctor before for a shot as this is not the first time this has happened. Everyday I come I’m normal, but these red blotches reoccur as I have to be in here daily,” Watkins said.

Bahamas Public Service Union (BPSU) president Kimsly Ferguson called for there to be better security measures for inspecting packages like microscopic lights which would  ensure no harmful substances are present.

He said they are seeking compensation for their workers who would have accumulated medical bills as a result of the hazardous conditions.

He added that though the government has identified a new facility for the post office staff, they need immediate attention until the relocation is complete.

“We’re suggesting that some temporary fixtures be put in place so that the people can work comfortably; namely the mold, air conditioning  and the rodent infestation. If these cosmetics can be taken care of, then persons would be comfortable until such time as that building is squared away,” Ferguson said.

Ferguson added that while the minister did say a rush would be put on relocating the staff, his main concern is the health of the workers.

Past BPSU president John Pinder showed support at the protest and said that workers must continue to put fire under the government until conditions improve.

Most of the building has exposed ceilings and broken leaky pipes as a result of renovations halted after the changeover in government.

The accounts department of the ministry of finance that was stationed at the post office has moved due to the horrible conditions.

The employees say they will continue to strike until they see results.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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