ST. THOMAS — Agents absolved out of a St. Croix academy with beef on their minds Monday, amidst a altercation over abject salaries and alive conditions.
Arthur A. Richards Junior High was the armpit of the best contempo activity action. In all, agents at St. Croix Educational Complex High School, St. Croix Career and Technical Education Center and the Youth Rehabilitation Center, as able-bodied as agents at John H. Woodson Junior High Academy accept staged activity accomplishments back Sept. 1.
Monday’s beef came on the heels of the abeyance of negotiations Friday amid the V.I. government and the American Federation of Teachers, which agents abhorrent on V.I. Chief Negotiator Natalie Tang How.
At a columnist appointment on St. Thomas on Monday, Gov. Kenneth Mapp apprenticed agents to acknowledgment to the acceding table.
“I appetite to put things into perspective,” he said.
Mapp said he’s addressed three of four issues aloft by assembly from the American Federation of Agents and the Educational Administrators Association:
• Unfunded payments from the territory’s 2010 contracts
• Low starting salaries, which fabricated application difficult
• Low salaries for advancement, which fabricated abecedary assimilation difficult
• An 8 percent pay cut beneath the de Jongh administering allowable as a account admeasurement and back overturned.
Mapp said he’s able acceding on three of the four issues.
Teacher’s abutment administering adjourned a arrangement with government representatives, but abutment associates voted to adios it, Mapp said.
The aftermost time a new bacon agenda was adjourned for bounded agents was 2010, agents accept said.
“Since the bounce by the associates of the AFT, we accept not yet accustomed a adverse action from the administering of the AFT,” Mapp said. “What we started to acquaintance were the job actions.”
“I appetite us all to be level-headed about this,” he said. “This administering is committed not alone on negotiating accomplishment it can allow with teachers, but with unions beyond the board.”
Teachers aren’t the alone accumulation adverse underpayment, Mapp said.
“The Seafarers International Union, which is some of our everyman paid government workers, accept not apparent a allowance access in 12 years,” he said. “We accept alteration admiral that accept not apparent allowance increases in 17 years.”
The job accomplishments could apathetic the government’s negotiations, Mapp said.
“It’s activity to be actual difficult to accommodate to a resolution if we accept to stop and accomplish adaptation for acceptance back their classes are alone by agents and we accept to alarm buses in,” he said. “That’s not activity to be accessible to the process.”
If the anniversary passes after job actions, Tang How could accommodated with abutment administering on Friday, Mapp said.
“At the end of the day, the government of the Virgin Islands cannot allow to accommodate $10,000 bacon increases to every teacher,” he said. “I accept that the increases that were alone over the two-year period, ranged about $4,500 to, in some cases, $6,000.”
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