St Vincent and the Grenadines: Teachers trade union agreed to go back to physical classes but noted that they would continue their strike on Tuesday and Wednesday against the mandate vaccination policy of the government.
The union made the announcement on December 6, 2021, noting that they will get back to the online as well as offline classes from Thursday, December 9, 2021, onwards. A protest has been planned by the teachers on December 10, 2021, in Kingstown, Union Island, Canouan, and Bequia, commencing from 9:30 am.
The union assured that the demonstrators would make sure that all the established COVID-19 guidelines would be followed. Both the unvaccinated and vaccinated individuals would participate in the strike.
In response to this, Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines Ralph Gonsalves cited, “You can’t use children as a battering ram against the government, it is wrong,” while urging the teachers to get back to their duties.
He added that it is unacceptable that the inoculated teachers are going and sitting in the protest.
Prime Minister further questioned ion the morality of the teachers, noting that they cannot put the future of the students, deciding on their own whether to teach them or not, citing, “Where is the public morality in you not doing your job? You will be paid for five days of employment but have determined in advance, three of the days, you will not be teaching people children?”.
“To have the government change its position, you want to use the children as a battering ram against the government?” he further added.
Earlier, the Prime Minister highlighted that if the teachers are refusing to go and teach the students, then the education ministry would hire other teachers on contract, including retired ones, following which now 91 new teachers have been hired, in both primary and secondary schools.
The data shows that around 85 percent of teachers are vaccinated against the deadliest COVID-19 mutant.