Salary increases to public sector: Recognise importance of workers’ salaries, benefits – Hamilton tells Private Sector

…says Govt pushing to make lives of every citizen better

In light of recent salary increases announced by President Dr Irfaan Ali for public servants, Labour Minister Joseph Hamilton on Thursday said that the local private sector needs to now step up in terms of the salaries and benefits offered to workers as the Guyana Government pushes to make the lives of every citizen better.
The minister’s statement comes on the heels of concerns expressed by private sector employees, who took to social media to complain of their salaries and wages remaining the same amidst rising cost of living.
Hamilton pointed out that private sector players need to recognise that “change and transformation” is upon Guyana and so they have to adjust accordingly.
“A year ago, two years ago, five years ago, people were leaving public sector to go work with private sector. Today, we have a reserve situation and therefore, at the level of the private sector companies, they have to recognise that because the government had could not complete with them years ago is now completing as regards salaries and wages, and emoluments,” Hamilton explained during an interview with the Guyana Times.
According to the Labour Minister, “there is enough opportunities for private sector companies to rise up from where they are and diversify themselves, and to be able to pay comparable wages and salaries to people.”
He went onto note that the government is not in competition with the private sector and will continue to support businesses so that they can thrive and help further boost the country’s economy. In fact, he contended that the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) administration has been doing everything possible to assist private sector companies to navigate new circumstances upon them in Guyana.
For its part, the Labour Minister outlined that government has worked to implement the national minimum wage, which has been increased to $60,000, back in July to put more monies in the pockets of private sector employees. Despite this move however, the public sector minimum wage is much higher.
As such, Hamilton encouraged private companies to recognise the importance of their human resources, warning that their inaction could see them facing consequences that would negatively impact their businesses.
“They [companies] have to recognise that it’s a new day and new time…workers now, potential employees, they have options and they can make some determinations that can affect you negatively,” he posited.
Minister Hamilton reminded that the Dr Irfaan Ali-led administration is committed to improving the lives of all Guyanese, This, he noted, is reflected in the Head of State’s announcements last week of an eight per cent across-the-board salary increase for all public servants and on Thursday of major salary adjustments for members of the Joint Services as well as pending increases for other categories of public servants along with more provisions in the upcoming 2023 Budget. (G8)