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NWU Addresses

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Mr. Cecil Simon started his service to the potable water sector in the Nineteen Fifties (1950’s) as a fifteen (15) year old young man and finally ended his service in 2012 at the age of seventy (70) years.
He might be the only worker who worked through four (4) changes of names of the state water service provider. He worked at the Castries Town Board as a Plumber from the Fifties to nineteen sixty-five (1965). In nineteen sixty-five (1965) the state-owned water service department had a name change to the Central Water Authority (CWA) where he worked as the Daily-paid Maintenance Supervisor for Castries. In nineteen eighty-six (1986) there was another name change to The Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA). Mr. Simon was promoted to Monthly Supervisor. In 1999 there was the fourth name change to the current Water and Sewerage Company Incorporated (WASCO Inc.). He was assigned to a new position within the Quick Response Crew where he ended his long service of over fifty (50) years of service to country and the people of Saint Lucia. He was there Day and Night to ensure that water was flowing in the mains and not going to waste on the ground.

Cecil Simon did some remarkable work over the years:

  • The removal of the 4” main under the then Vigie Airport and laying a new 6” PVC main on the side of the Airport.
  • The removal of the 3” asbestos main at La Pansee and replacing it with 4” PVC pipes.
  • The removal of the 3” Asbestos main at Pavee and replacing it with 4” PVC pipes.
  • The removal of 2” GI corroded pipe in the La Clery lanes and replacing it with 2” PVC pipes.
  • The removal of 4” GI corroded pipe in the San Souci area and replacing with 4” PVC pipes.
  • The removal of 2” GI corroded pipe in the Rose Hill lanes and replacing it with 2” PVC pipes.
  • The removal of 2” GI corroded pipe in the New Village lanes and replacing it with 2” PVC pipes.

Those processes of changing corroded and leaking water mains and service lines are ongoing problems that need attention on a daily basis. Mr Simon and his crew did that in every street and road from the north of the island to Anse La Raye in the west and to Ravine Poison in the east. It was always hard work but the hardest works came about when there was a major Storm like Hurricane Allen, Hurricane Thomas, Tropical Storm Debby and the entire water system got damaged due to land slippage, high winds and river damage. The water system at that time had to be repaired from ground up. It is at times like these, when all the experience, skills and know how need to come into play to rebuild the system as quickly as possible, that Mr Cecil Simon put all his tools on the table to recreate the system in the shortest space of time. He with his men would work Day and night to put water back in the homes of the consumers.

What was very clear is that Mr. Cecil Simon was an extremely hard worker, productive and disciplined. He was well respected. He always found a way to laugh even when he was annoyed. He served his fellow workers in the capacity as Shop Steward for the National Workers Union NWU) but also for St. Lucia Workers Union and the Civil Service Association.

Cecil Simon worked on many collective bargaining agreements from the 1970’s to 2009. The workers derived great benefits from the changes that were made over the years that he served, like Length of service premium, Reclassification, Drivers Allowance, Meal allowance, Termination pay, Improvement in transportation, Uniforms, Tool allowance, Dinner allowance, Annual Wage increases and Protection/Safety gear. Many other areas were improved during the time he was a Shop Steward and Senior Shop Steward at C.W.A., W.A.S.A. and WASCO Inc.

Mr Cecil Simon had hobbies too:

  • He enjoyed dancing 🕺. He said that he danced because it helped him to rebalance his muscles and his bones after he worked for a week in confined spaces and awkward positions. He said his brain gets relaxed at that time.
  • He liked Rooster fighting, breeding roosters and improving their blood line.
  • He loved hunting wild duck 🦆 at wetlands with Mr. Yorke.
  • He played football for CWA and WASA at the CSA football tournaments and for Maynard Hill football team.
  • He had some nicknames given to him by his co-workers: (CS), (SI), (BOOSI) and (PAPA WASCO).

WASCO can be described as a construction site where the works have been ongoing for a hundred and seventy-eight (178) years, where it is still expanding day by day and will only stop when there are no persons left. Cecil Simon did his part on that big construction site. He was unexpectedly called on Friday October 21, 2022 to go to another part of the universe to continue his duties in a new life form. He was always there and will always be there.

REST IN PEACE CECIL, REST IN PEACE.

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Father Albert Smith – Assistant Parish Priest, Our Lady of the Assumption Church, Soufriere and former NWU Shop Steward at NRDF

National Workers Union 2020 Annual Conference of Delegates

Theme: Deep reflection on our consolidation efforts towards the survival and sustainability of the National Workers Union.

As you celebrate your Annual Conference of Delegates, I bring you greetings and best wishes for every success as you forge ahead to be the best union, second to none, placing first always the welfare of your members.
God is the source of our very existence, therefore all we do and say should always be rooted in him.
As you celebrate your Annual Conference of Delegates let me draw your attention to the words of God through the prophet Micah, 6: 8, and I quote, “ The LORD has told us what is good. What he requires of us is this: to do what is just, to show constant love, and to live in humble fellowship with our God.”
The Church in her mission has taken these words to heart and has been in the fore front of workers rights and protection in the industrial world of Europe and beyond.
In the 19th century, Pope Leo XIII recognized that economic changes introduced new relationships between those who had wealth and those who did not.

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John Burke King. OBE
Committed to Upholding Workers’ rights

TRADE UNIONISM

He was a trade unionist at heart and an accomplished musician.

John Burke King was born on Victoria Street, Dennery in Saint Lucia on March 27th, 1919. When he was still a baby his mother took him to Trinidad and it is there he attended school and developed a love for and learned to read music. After the tragic passing of his mother, Burke was placed in an orphanage and a few years later was taken back to Saint Lucia by an aunt.

His love for music endured the transition and he continued to study, practice and excel. During the 1940s and 1950s, Mr. King became popular on the music scene playing his favourite instrument, the saxaphone. He established a band called “The Merry Makers Orchestra” and performed with them for many years.

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Address by Mr. Geoffrey Devaux, Chartered Accountant

at Installation Ceremony for NWU Senior Shop Stewards

Précis of an address to Senior Shop Stewards of the NWU. Saturday September 5 2020 7PM.
First off congratulations to the NWU for once again setting the bar a little higher in terms of the organization encouraging its members, in this case its more Senior Members, to aspire to heights perhaps previously reached but not formally recognized .
This very act dovetails with one of the six “Principles of Societal Well Being” that I wish to highlight through my address. The Principle in question is the one referred to as “The Common Good”.
The Common Good is one of six principles that when operating together results in a society functioning properly. By that I mean there would be strong family structures, close to full employment, education for all and accommodation for those who wish to excel, very low to zero crime levels, accessible and high standard of health care for all, freedom of worship, good governance etc.

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