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17 Workers Sue Children’s Hospital

Seventeen workers of the Princess Marie Louise Hospital (Children’s Hospital) in Accra have sued the hospital at the Industrial Division of the Accra High Court for engaging them as casual workers for between four and 13 years.

They are currently being paid between GH¢168 and GH¢473 per month as laboratory technicians, pharmacy assistants, nutrition officers, revenue collectors among other schedules.Joined to the suit are the Minister of Health (MoH), the Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations and the Attorney-General.

The plaintiffs are seeking a declaration that their engagement as casual workers for between four and 13 years is a clear violation of the Labour Act of 2003 and aspects of the 1992 Constitution.

Regularisation

They are also asking for an order for their employment status to be regularised and the payment of all salary arrears due them from the date of the regularisation of their employment with interest at the prevailing commercial bank rate, plus all other entitlements and salary increments that they may be entitled to.

In their statement of claim, the plaintiffs said they were professionals who were engaged as casual workers by the hospital, with the concurrence of the MoH, the GHS and the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations.

They claimed that after the expiration of the casual appointment, they were re-engaged and had been in continuous service for more than four years and for some 13 years.

Discrimination

It was their contention that despite having been in continuous service, they were still considered as casual or temporary staff, with very minimal remuneration which they considered to be very discriminatory.

They contended that by the operational definition of the Labour Act, they were permanent staff of the hospital and entitled to be migrated onto the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS) as directed by the Ministry of Finance, as far back as November 1, 2011 and were also entitled to other benefits.

The workers said all attempts to regularise their employment with the hospital had been met with fierce resistance, intimidation and victimisation.

The situation, they said, had, among other things, made them lose enhanced Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) contributions.

The court is yet to fix a date for hearing.

 

Source: radioxyzonline.com

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