Tuesday, 17th July 2012
Netto accuses Bossano of ‘unsocialist, anti-trade union, probably illegal’ practices in Care Agency
GSD spokesman for Social Services Jaime Netto has declared that the introduction of 11 month work contracts in the Care Agency, is a policy that “has been forced by the Minister for Employment” to get rid of British and Spanish employees.
Speaking during the Budget, Mr Netto said this will have serious implications for the quality of service it delivers and “for our relationship with our neighbours on the other side of the frontier.”
Mr Netto disclosed that a petition by the family of service-users is already taking place and expressed concern that Mr Bossano was driving such a move “behind the scenes,” against hard-working and conscientious employees.
The Government plan, he continued, is to pave the way “for getting rid of them and then employing unemployed Gibraltarians.”
The Opposition spokesman said the plan had already produced a ‘victim’ in Nursing Co-ordinator, Mrs Lynne Cowen, who has decided to return to UK as she did not accept the contract. According to Mr Netto plans are already afoot to have her position filled with “a charge nurse of the GHA by direct appointment.”
He said such a policy will inevitably result in “press comments on the other side of the frontier, thereby exacerbating the hostile climate” that exists following “Government’s bad handling of the fishermen dispute.”
Mr Netto said that if this occurs, Mr Bossano “will have to share responsibility for a deterioration of cross-border relations something he obviously never cared or bothered about.”
The GSD MP said: “All things being equal at the time that a new vacancy arises, we would all agree that a Gibraltarian should get the job, but what Mr. Bossano is pursuing is a very different matter, he is forcing good employees in existing jobs to 11 months contracts with a view of replacing them by locals regardless of whether they are suitable or not. This is unsocialist, it is anti-trade union, and probably illegal.”
He said this move will devalue the service in the Care Agency, demoralising the staff, unnecessarily worrying the families of service-user, and “increasing conflict across the frontier between ordinary working people.”
Mr Netto called on Mr Picardo “to show leadership in his Government and put a stop to the antics of his Employment Minister before things get further out of hand.”