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Security officers employed by Integrated Security Services and are working in the Black Bush Polder area, East Berbice- Corentyne (Region Six) on Monday took to the streets to demand outstanding salaries owed to them by the security firm.
The aggrieved workers protested outside the Mibicuri Hospital demanding that the security firm pays them money owed tot hem since November 2020.
The security workers said they have been waiting for weeks to receive their monthly salaries but every time they contact the firm, they are being told to wait until ‘next week’.
Thirty-four year-old, Sookdeo Mathura of Mibicuri South, Black Bush Polder said he has been working as a security guard for several years and since Integrated Security took over some three years ago they have been experiencing difficulties in obtaining their monthly salaries.
“We didn’t get pay for the past 2 months and we didn’t receive any leave package from since 2017 when Integrated Security take over. All I’m asking is for us to get our money and our leave package because it is not easy to work so hard for our money and at the end of the month we have to wait two/three months before we collect one month salary,” Mathura told Village Voice News.
The frustrated Mathura explained that monthly money is deducted from their salaries to be paid to the National Insurance Scheme (NIS). However, he said that the money is not remitted to NIS.
“Them don’t pay NIS for us but every month when you see the pay-slip, money coming out for NIS. No money is there to show that NIS is paid for us. The money just cutting out from we salary every month”, Mathura said.
He disclosed that the last salary he received was for the month of November, 2020. That salary was paid on December 18, 2020.
“This is not fair. This is February 1st, 2021 and we didn’t receive December money nor January money as yet. How can we survive like this? I live with my mother and I do this job to maintain myself and her. Good thing I live a short distance from work and I can ride and come because if I had to catch car then I don’t know how I would have meet work everyday because we not getting any money,” he said.
Similarly, Norma Singh, a 59-year-old single mother told Village Voice News that she has been working with he firm to provide for her children but with the current situation she is unable to take care of her family.
“I have my children to look after, I have light bill, phone bill and rent to pay every month. Christmas come and I didn’t even had money to treat my children because December 18th I collect my November money. It’s very hard and I want my money now. I can’t wait any longer,” the angry woman said.
Simone Bissoon, a mother of two said it is very hard to work for only $40,000 every month and she has two teenagers to take care of.
“I’m a single parent and I does make the sacrifice to come to work. I have to send my 14-year-old son to school every day because if you don’t send them they does blame you as parents. To come out of here everyday and go to school on the road is $1000. Then the school does demand textbooks that they need to study, not forgetting when they have to print this thing and photocopy this and that for assignment and stuff,” a frustrated Bissoon told Village Voice News.
The workers said they have had enough of the security firm pushing them around to receive their hard earned salaries. They are calling on the authorities to assist them in getting their salaries. (Farah Bates-Ali)