ORANJESTAD- Government Commissioners Alida Francis and Claudia Toet on Monday will write a letter to the Ministry of Social Affairs in The Hague to confirm that the island does want the increase in Minimum Wage, which has been promised to Bonaire and Saba.
According to Francis, in conversation with the BES-Reporter, the whole matter seems to be one of misinterpretation. “Something went wrong in the interpretation of the letter that the Social Dialogue sent to The Netherlands. The letter actually does state that we want the minimum wage increased, but at the same time the letter expresses that we want more than that”.
According to Francis, the letter to be sent out by Statia Government, will confirm that St. Eustatius, just as Bonaire and Saba wants to work with the new and increased Minimum Wage for 2022.
Francis made use of the opportunity to praise the work of the Central Dialogue. “The CDS has done very thorough and excelent work. The best part about this is, that what they have done is non-political, but focusses on the issues which need addressing”, said Francis.
Francis adds that the work the members of the Central Committee has been doing is by members who have a full-time job. “Apart from their normal duties and full-time jobs, these people have invested an enormous amount of time to put together a thorough report for the Ministry”.
Francis does expect the matter to be solved relatively quickly. “I personally don’t want to get into any discussion of why the misinterpretation took place, and I don’t look for any political motivations. We have very clear what we discussed in the Central Dialogue. What we have been saying, though, is that raising the minimum wage is just the beginning. There are many more areas which need attention and need to be addressed for those on the island in a less fortunate situation”, Francis concluded. The Government Commissioner also said that the Government of St. Eustatius was on the same page as Bonaire and Saba, when it came to these matters. “We have regular contact, and we are all on the same page”.
The president of the Central Committee, former Island Governor Gerald Berkel, earlier on Sunday gave a similar explanation on the situation which had arisen.
The letter CDS sent to the Minstry, as well as the report compiled by CDS can be found by clicking the link below: