St. Maarten Government presents revised labor contract draft law

POSTED: 07/11/13 12:25 PM

St. Maarten -The new United People’s Party/ Democratic Party/ Laville coalition government plans to retable the issue of short term contracts and their abuse via a draft initiative law to parliament. No date has been set for this but the new proposal is expected to eliminate several loopholes that were found in the previous initiative law that was tabled by the National Alliance and criticized by the Advisory Council.

“We received a draft initiative law and there were questions and comments from the Council of Advice on that draft. The Ministry of Public Health, Labor and Social Development (VSA) in the meantime has spoken to the initiators of the draft law and together with input from the ministry we are looking at preparing a new proposal in combination with the initiative draft law to re-present to parliament,” Prime Minister Sarah Wescot-Williams said during Wednesday’s Council of Ministers press briefing.

The Advisory Council noted in its advice about the draft law that it would make the labor market less flexible and that this would have an adverse effect on the economy. The council also foresees that employers would have simply evaded the law by hiring staff through employment agencies.

Lastly, the council stated that the authors of the draft – the National Alliance faction – had not substantiated that abuse of short term labor contracts indeed is taking place.

Consultations have been ongoing on that draft law to eliminate the loopholes, with the prime minister adding that she looks forward to receiving a proposal from Minister of VSA Cornelius de Weever on short labor contracts that would take into account the draft initiative law.

Should the draft initiative see the halls of parliament during this governing period, it would have to compete with approximately 47 draft laws that are still to be dealt with by parliament; these are laws from government and laws that were inherited from the former Netherlands Antilles.


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