Minister's statement undermines respect for peaceful assembly

Peaceful Assembly 

Since our last update, there have been a number of major and minor protests in Trinidad and Tobago. The Energy Minister has responded to demonstrations by truckers and members of the community in La Brea by claiming that protests only make her job more difficult, especially because they make it harder to attract business. The protests continued but were halted after a senior police official warned of mass arrests if people persisted in blocking access to the work site. 

Also notable was the Public Transport Service Corporation protest, led by branch chairman Darryl Lamy, in their quest to “remind the Government that close to 300 workers were to receive arrears, gratuities and payments in lieu of vacation leave.” This protest was carried out during a government launch for the introduction of wifi on public service transportation. The protesters sought to use this space to highlight their plight. 

Finally, Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission workers protested outside the Ministry of Public Utilities. This assembly was led by Oilfield Workers Trade Union president Ancel Roget. Protesters claimed that the government was in favour of conducting contract labour, which would ultimately be of detriment to their working conditions.