Published On: Sun, May 3rd, 2020

Ferrier: “Call out these morons for what they are.”

Mike Ferrier 20180115 - HHPHILIPSBURG – Former Minister of Finance Michael Ferrier has expressed his displeasure with the attitude of the head of the labor department, Peggy Ann Dros towards the private sector. “To have a loud mouth constantly riling up employees against employers is unacceptable to me,” Ferrier wrote in a statement. “No civil servant, including the head of the labor department, ever worries where their next paycheck is coming from. In the private sector we do; we have to.”

Ferrier also included the parliament’s president Rolando Brison in his criticism. Brison, in one of his livestreams, threatened the Maho Group of Companies with legal action: “If you do not follow the law, if you illegally let people go or metaphorically hold a gun against their head and tell them: this is what needs to happen; sign this or else, you will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

Brison said he relayed this message to Labor Minister Richard Panneflek, adding that “Maho is probably the largest recipient of stimulus-support on the island.”

Ferrier: “When election time is on most, if not all of them, especially the derelicts like this tech-savvy smooth-talking Prez, stand in line outside Spadaro’s office looking for campaign contributions. After they get to the Promised Land of more than 18,000 guilders salaries a month, Maho and other law-abiding companies become their whipping dogs for the sake of cheap politics. This type of politician is the reason why we need a new referendum. We are doomed if as a people we do not call out these morons for what they are.”

Dros said that in the current situation the no-work-no-pay rule cannot apply: “It only applies if an employee refuses to come to work.”

To Brison’s observation that employees have been forced to sign zero-hour contracts before receiving their April-paycheck, Dros said: “That smells like trickery. I would like to see such cases to go to court to teach these employers a lesson.”

Ferrier took offense to these statements. “In the USA as the doors of the businesses closed, millions were immediately out of a job and boom, the problem is that of the federal government. Here the government (for good reason) tells the employer to shut down and boom, antiquated labor laws and an out-of-money government makes all the employees the problem of the employers.”

No help from Dros in this department, Ferrier observes: “Not an ounce of sympathy from the head of the labor department, Mrs. Dros, for employers who may or may not have been scraping by to stay in business before COVID-19. In her opinion all employers are no-good bums that only complain about how bad business is and who constantly take advantage of employees.”

Ferrier is not saying that all employers behave the way they should: “I am sure there are some bad apples like all over but generalization is unacceptable. If all employers go bankrupt, where will all employees go knocking? Isn’t it on the door of the same labor office? In times of crises, the country’s leadership must bring people together to make it to the other side, not pit one side against the other. I am convinced that the prime minister and her cabinet are trying their utmost, not always with the desired results maybe, but (I give her) an A for effort on many fronts.”