2 Aug 2011

Fiji unions say interim regime's move is vindictive

7:35 am on 2 August 2011

Fiji unions say a change to the way union dues are deducted from civil servants' pay packets is a vindictive act by the regime.

But the acting interim prime minister, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, says its new decree aims to protect civil servants and is not a backlash against unions.

Sally Round reports.

"Fiji's interim government is to stop deducting about $2 million in subs on behalf of the Fiji Public Service Association. Mr Sayed-Khaiyum says other reforms to the Public Service Act include specific protection from sexual harrassment, discrimination and basic rights to fair wages. He says state employees are still free to join a trade union but they will have to pay their union dues themselves. The Fiji Trades Union Congress says such deductions have been the cornerstone of good industrial relations for decades in Fiji. It says the latest move is an attempt to single out unions and is a continuing show of contempt and discrimination by the regime."