GNAT calls for renegotiation of expired collective agreement
The Bono Regional Chapter of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) calling on government to engage with the Teacher Unions in negotiation of the expired collective agreement.
Mr Thomas Asante Armstrong, the Bono Regional Chairman of the GNAT, at a press conference in Sunyani emphasized that the 2020 Collective Agreement between Government and the Teacher Unions, which came into effect retrospectively in January 2020 for a three-year period, had expired.
He highlighted that GNAT members wished to bring to the attention of the government that the Collective Agreement for the Teaching Staff within the Ghana Education Service document had reached its three-year period without any negotiations with the teachers for a new agreement.
Mr Armstrong mentioned that many unresolved issues from the January 2020 document such as allowances for teachers in underserved areas, entertainment allowance, and housing/rent allowance persist.
Additionally, he said car maintenance allowance, fuel allowance, electricity subsidy allowance, a new scheme of service clothing allowance, risk allowance, among others that needed to be considered.
He stated that GNAT was urging the employer to initiate negotiations for a new Collective Agreement with the necessary urgency to determine the way forward and called on the government to take immediate action in resolving all outstanding issues.
Mr Armstrong, however, cautioned that if the employer fails to respond to their call and meet their expectations, they will have themselves to be blamed for any action taken.
Mr Monica Abayama, a member of GNAT told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an interview that it was evident that the livelihoods of teachers, particularly those serving in disadvantaged areas, were under immense strain, while the financial burdens faced by educators in urban regions have to deal with exorbitant housing rents and high cost of living.
Consequently, these hardships Ms Abayama explained, had contributed significantly to the alarming increase in teacher attrition across the country, she lamented many of her colleagues could not withstand the burdens imposed upon them.