Mitchell blasts Lloyd over firings

From left: Minister of Education, Jeff Lloyd and Progressive Liberal Party Chairman, Senator Fred Mitchell.

Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman Fred Mitchell Wednesday called Education Minister Jeff Lloyd insensitive and compassionless after “bragging” to the media that he is terminating more than 100 employees.

In a statement, Mitchell said, it’s obvious that Lloyd has “taken leave of common sense and decency”.

“How could the minister of education say that he is happy to have dismissed people from the Ministry of Education,” Mitchell’s statement read.

“We issued a statement before asking whether he had taken leave of his good sense and decency. This last statement by him confirms that he has taken leave of common sense and decency.

“This comment reported in today’s press is shameful, compassionless and insensitive. The truth is that Jeffery Lloyd, as the Minister of Education, has nothing to show but talk since he has been in office.  It has simply been a bunch of talk describing problems, without one solution in sight.”

Mitchell said Lloyd has “exceeded the callousness of the prime minister, the minister of tourism and the minister of health”.

“Just when we thought that callousness had reached its heights, when corned beef was attacked by the minister of health, along comes the minister of education boasting about firing people. At the same time, however, he was able to effect tens of thousands of dollars in renovating his ministerial suite,” he said.

“The public service is warned now that no one is safe.  The rule of law means nothing to this government. Poor people are treated like dirt. This would not have been a boasting point of the previous minister of education under the PLP. The public service dealt with disciplinary issues and separations as a matter of routine. What the PLP was concerned about was educating our people, making sure that they had work and were in work. All this crew can talk about is firing people. The minister’s actions are lousy and a natural disgrace.”

On Tuesday, Lloyd said that a few dozen contract workers within the ministry have been sacked due to irresponsible behavior.

According to Lloyd, more than 200 workers have been found to be in breach of their contracts – a large portion of which, did not report to work for some 100 days, but were still being paid.

“We identified over 200 individuals who have violated their employment agreement with the Ministry of Education,” Lloyd explained.

“I indicated that those persons were either being disciplined or terminated, and I am happy to report that the disciplining process is underway and there have been some terminations.

“We expect that there will be more.”

Lloyd maintained that the education ministry gave delinquent contract workers enough notice before clamping down.