The government has placed 85 people employed with the 52-week employment program “on hold” because it does not have anywhere to place them, Minister of State for the Public Service Pia Glover-Rolle said yesterday.
She said 233 people were engaged with the program since July but are not being paid.
“We have 85 that we would’ve placed on hold because we don’t have anywhere to place them,” Glover-Rolle said.
“We have about 68 that are reporting but have some issues of attendance and then we have another 10 to 12 that are signing in and we don’t have anywhere to place them.”
She said these workers are across the public sector.
Glover-Rolle noted that the government is reviewing hires that occurred leading up to the September 16 general election.
“I think it’s important in responsible governance that there is accountability and transparency,” she said.
“The taxpayers’ money is being used to fund the salaries of these workers and they’re not providing basically a decent day’s work for the pay that they’re receiving.”
As a result, according to Glover-Rolle, the government is seeking to engage private-sector employers that will be interested in engaging these workers.
She said this will “fall well” with businesses that are trying to bounce back from last year’s restrictions, which were imposed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Of course, I would extend to the private sector employers that we haven’t already reached out to, to reach out to the public service and see if we have employees that we can place based on the skillsets or needs of your business,” Glover-Rolle said.