The modern labor union is a vital part of any democracy, and is often the only way many working people can exercise any control over their work lives. In this section you will find answers to general questions about the PSA.
What do Unions do?
Unions are the principal means for workers to organize and protect their rights on the job. The union contract or “collective bargaining agreement” establishes the basic terms and conditions of work. Unions give workers a voice with employers and provide a means to gain a measure of security and dignity on the job.
Why do I need the PSA?
Through the PSA, our members have an organized voice – one that is heard. However, by yourself it is hard to be heard, the PSA provides that collective platform from which your voice can be heard.
What can the PSA do for me?
The PSA gives you power – power that can help decide your job security, fair hearing of grievances, representation at the Ministry of Labour and the Industrial Court and also Disciplinary Tribunals; better salaries and better working conditions.
How is this done?
PSA negotiates Collective Agreements and engages in joint consultation with the employer to gain continued improvement in working conditions and expeditious handling of employee’s grievances. The PSA also influences Government’s economic policies in the interest of all of our members.
What is the purpose of the PSA?
To promote and protect the interest and welfare of its members., To promote a cordial relationship between its members and Government, and to settle disputes amicably where possible.To improve the service generally, To provide medical, death and other general benefits for its, members, To promote liaison with other Associations or groups having similar interests,To do all other such lawful things as are incidental or conclusive to the attainment of the above goals.
Who runs the PSA?
Some employers may seek to convince you that "the union" is some group of outsiders, trying to come in and "disturb the family atmosphere" and dictate what goes on in the workplace. The truth is that YOU and your co-workers are the union - you elect your own officers and decide what you want your union to do by a democratic process.
Can I join the PSA?
Yes you can, once you are employed in an entity that offers a service, i.e. the Public Service, Statutory Boards and Authorities, Private Sector. It does not matter what position you hold in your Organization, whether temporary or permanent, the PSA can represent you.
It is also your Right under the Constitution of Trinidad and Tobago Act, Chapter 1:01 (1976) which guarantees freedom of association and assembly. Therefore it is your RIGHT to join the PSA. All monthly-paid employees engaged in delivering a service are eligible to join. It does not matter whether you are temporarily or permanently appointed, or hold the post of Cleaner of Permanent Secretary/ Chief Executive Officer/Executive Director.
Am I eligible to join the PSA?
All monthly-paid employees engaged in the public service or incorporated, are eligible to join. It does not matter whether you are temporarily or permanently appointed, or hold the post of Cleaner or Permanent Secretary.
What is the structure of the PSA?
The Conference of Delegates is the highest ruling body of the Association. The second highest ruling body is the General Council which is also the Finance Committee of the PSA. Every four (4) years, the members elect an Executive under the one-man one-vote system and it is responsible for the day to day organization and management of PSA affairs. The Executive is assisted by a support Staff.
How can the PSA resolve my grievances?
If you have a problem with your employer, you need representation to both prepare and present your case successfully. The PSA gives this level of representation through the full-time Officers of the Association. You can either write to the PSA or visit or complete the grievance Form which authorizes the Officer to address your grievance.
Who administers the PSA's finances?
The PSA Finances are administered by the elected Executive through its Finance Committee –the General Council. The ‘Books’ are readily available for the scrutiny by members and an Annual Audit is carried out by an Auditor appointed by the Registrar of Trade Unions. The Audited Report is presented to the Conference of Delegates within the first quarter of the year, i.e. before 31st March. The Union’s activities and operations are supported entirely by members’ Subscriptions.
What is the membership dues?
Dues are paid monthly through salary deductions and in special cases over the counter along with an Entrance Fee of only $10.00. Fifty dollars ($50.00) per month is all it takes for you to enjoy all the Benefits offered..
Three steps to become a member of the PSA.
> 2. Complete application
> 3. Send us your application