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Remarks by delivered by Her Excellency Anya Williams Deputy Governor & Head of the Public Service Turks and Caicos Islands Government Pay and Grading Review 4 December 2023

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#TurksandCaicos, December 5, 2023

Acknowledging the protocol that has already been established, I greet everyone present in your respective capacities, including the Honourable Premier, Deputy Premier and Members of the Turks and Caicos Islands Cabinet and House of Assembly. 

 A special Good Morning to our public servants and members of the general public across the length and breadth of the Turks and Caicos Islands that are virtually attending this special briefing.

 This morning, I am delighted to deliver the results of the 2023 Turks and Caicos Islands Government Pay and Grading Review.

Background:

The public service, as you are aware, is responsible for delivering on government’s mandate in providing key services to residents and visitors of the Turks and Caicos Islands. This includes key sectors such as: policing, national security, border protection and safety, as well as healthcare, education, social services, and various other services. 

To this end, it is important that government is, not only able to attract, but to also retain highly qualified, skilled, and motivated professionals to the public service, that are able to assist and to lead on delivering government’s mandate.

It is also important for government to have the ability to offer competitive remuneration packages on par with regional public services with similar economies as the Turks and Caicos Islands.

The last pay and grading review took place almost ten years ago in 2014 and was implemented in April 2015.  It was approved as 2022/2023 budget objective for government to undergo a comprehensive independent review of all salaries and allowances for the core public service and government subverted bodies.

A budget of $700,000 was approved by the government to carry out this work, and, following an open tendering process, the Turks and Caicos Islands Government awarded a contract to Ernst & Young Services Ltd (EY); a reputable public accounting firm, whose brand is recognized in the Top 4 worldwide for their accounting practices and professional standards, to carry out a review of the pay and grading system of our public service. The review was set over a over a six-month period from May 2023 to November 2023.

The terms of reference for the review required the consultant to independently, propose a new Public Service pay and grading system, with consideration for inflation and the cost of living in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

Objectives:

The objectives of the pay and grading review were:

  1. To create a pay and grading system that supports the delivery of high-quality public services, which includes support for the recruitment and retention of qualified personnel needed to manage and deliver those services.
  2. To create a system that motivates, recognizes, and rewards high levels of performance.
  3. To create a system that ensures that pay is equitable, taking account of job responsibilities and demands.
  4. To create a system that ensures that overall pay levels, the structure of the remuneration package and the terms and conditions are competitive in relevant markets, which may differ between occupational groups.
  5. To create a system that is sustainable and can be maintained over time within public service budget constraints.
  6. To ensure that pay and grading, and the way in which it is managed, is transparent, well understood and perceived to be fair.

Approach:

In regard to the approach, the overall approach of the review was participative, involving key stakeholders in all main tasks.

During the inception stage, it was agreed that the governance and consultation model for the review should consist of three tiers:

  1. The Governance Committee
  2. The Pay and Grading Working Group and
  3. The MDA-Ministry/Department level Pay and Grading Working Groups.

During the review, the Governance Committee chaired by myself as Deputy Governor and Head of the Public Service, met on a weekly basis to:  guide the work of the EY project team; to review progress; and to ensure that the review’s options, recommendations and outputs aligned with the Government’s objectives. 

The Pay and Grading Working Group consisting of representatives from:  the Civil Service Association; the Police Executive and Welfare Association; the Ministry of Education; the Ministry of Health; and other key employment sectors from within in the Turks and Caicos Government, met periodically during the review, to review progress and to provide guidance and feedback on the emerging findings.

The MDA Ministry/Department level working groups were managed internally within each ministry/department, to review the findings from the review of specific relevance to the MDA.

Consultation:

In regards to consultation, there was also internal and external mechanisms in place during the consultancy.

This included engagement at key points in the review, including:

  • Briefing meetings with the Premier and Deputy Premier.
  • Cabinet briefing meetings.
  • Briefing meeting with members of the House of Assembly including a review of comparator information on compensation for equivalent positions in legislative bodies in the region.
  • Briefing meetings with the Executive Board.
  • Briefing meeting with the Deputy Director of the Integrity Commission; and
  • A final review meeting with the Integrity Commission.

Findings:

On to what we you have all been waiting for, the findings of the review.

Data compiled found that the Turks and Caicos Islands Public Service, the largest employer in the Turks and Caicos Islands, had grown in both size and levels of responsibility since it’s last pay and grading review and that there had been significant changes in economic conditions due to the impacts of inflation, which had resulted in the current levels of public service pay not being commensurate with the roles that staff play or with resident living conditions.

This was evidenced in the market survey which was carried out as a part of this review, which found public service pay to be, in some cases, significantly lower that of:  government statutory bodies, the local private sector, as well as regional public services.

The review therefore concluded that while the current pay structure was suitable to be retained, that changes needed to be made to make the structure, including rate of pay, including the overall remuneration package more competitive.

To this end, the following recommendations were approved by the Turks and Caicos Islands Cabinet at its meeting on Wednesday November 29th, 2023:

  1. That a minimum 10% increase is to be applied to all grade structures across the Turks and Caicos Government effective December 1st, 2023.
  2. That a new grade structure is to be implemented for the health sector effective December 1, 2023.
  3. That the previous 10-point grade system would be expanded to include an eleventh grade for senior professionals, as well as three grade bands for executive staff.
  4. That the following allowances are to be absorbed into basic pay: Provo Allowance, Duty Allowance, Child Allowance and Professional Allowance.
  5. The previous grade structure for the Police and Teachers to be retained with modifications.
  6. That increases are to be implemented in a number of front-line special allowances.

Overall Results of the Review:

A total of $18.2m, an overall increase of 22% in manpower costs, has been approved by the Cabinet of the Turks and Caicos Islands to facilitate the implementation of the first phase of the pay regarding exercise for staff across the Turks and Caicos Islands Government.

Every member of staff, in every island, in every sector of the Turks and Caicos Islands Government will receive a minimum 10% increase in their net pay following the absorption of certain allowances, effective December 1st, 2023, with certain key sectors receiving higher levels of increases.

$13.1m or 72% of the total $18.2m pay and grading review budget has been allocated towards salary increases in the following key sectors:  

  • Policing
  • Healthcare
  • Education
  • Front Line
  • Administrative and Support Staff

These sectors account for 1,568 employees or 79% of our current workforce.

Pay and Grading Review Highlights 

Education:

A total of $3,941,608 or 27.1% of the pay and grading budget has been allocated towards increases in pay in the education sector.

374 staff in the teaching sector will receive the following pay increases effective December 1, 2023

Trained Teachers 12.8%

Graduate Teachers 25%

Heads of Department 29.9%

Vice Principals 42%

Principals 57.1%

The basic salary for a Graduate Teacher has been increased to $48,320.00.

The basic salary for a Head of Department has been increased to $56,037

The basic salary for Vice Principals has been increased to $66,610.

The basic salary for Principals has been increased to $79,178.

All Teachers will continue to receive a Materials Allowance of $100 per month or $1,200 per annum in addition to their basic pay.

The compensation package for our 286 Graduate Teachers will be increased to $60,320 per annum, which places us at the upper point of the teaching scales in the region.

Healthcare:

A total of $1,880,441 or 10.4% of the pay and grading budget, has been allocated to facilitate pay increases in the health sector.

173 staff in the Ministry of Health will receive the following pay increases, following the absorption of Provo, Duty and Professional Allowance effective December 1, 2023:

Community Health Aide 28.9%

Community Mental Health Nurse 28.6%

Registered/Community Health Nurse 27.4%

Registered Nurse/Midwife 20.8%

Medical Officers 22.9%

Staff where appropriate will receive a telephone and transportation allowance.

Front Line Staff: 

A total of 3,229,292 or 18% of the overall total cost of the 2023 pay and grading review has been allocated towards pay increases for our front-line staff.

378 staff in Grade 5 which includes: Immigration, Customs, Prison, Road Safety, Fire Safety, Fisheries, Maritime, Compliance, Administrative and other officers will receive a net pay increase of 28.3%

The basic pay for these posts has been increased to $38,691.00.

Duty and Provo Allowance has been absorbed into basic pay.

Immigration Task Force Officers will receive an additional $800 per month allowance and Supervisors will receive $1,000 per month, $12,000 per annum.

Senior Front-Line Officers:

In addition to the $3.2m allocated for front line officers, a total of $1,770,115 has been allocated towards increases for senior front-line officers.

209 Senior Front-Line Officers in Grade 6 which includes Senior Immigration, Senior Customs, Senior Prison, Senior Fire Safety, Senior Administrative, Finance and Tax Officers following the absorption of Provo and Duty Allowance will receive a net increase of 22.5%

The basic salaries for these posts have been increased to $46,992.

Staff where appropriate will receive a telephone and transportation allowance.

Police: 

A total of $1,480,449 has been allocated towards additional pay increases in the Police sector.

317 staff in the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force will receive the following net pay increases effective December 1, 2023 in addition to the 14% across the board salary increase they received in 2022/2023:

District Constables 18.8%

Constable 12.2%

Sergeant 12.8%

Inspector 12.6%

Assistant Superintendent 13.6%

Superintendent 17.7%

The basic salary for a Police Constable has been increased to $37,748; Sergeant $49,528; Inspector $56,037; Assistant Superintendent $63,400; Superintendent $73,525.

All Police Officers will continue to receive a Housing Allowance.

Detective, Marine, Close Protection and Tactical Allowances will be increased by 100% from $500 to $1,000 per month or $12,000 per annum.

Combining the 14% salary increase awarded to the Police in October 2022 with the increases to be awarded in December 2023, Police salaries are being increased by 25-30%.

Support Staff: 

A total of $805,866 has been allocated to provide 117 staff in Grade 4, which includes Administrative Assistants will receive a 27.3% net pay increase raising their basic salary to $32,550 following the absorption of Provo Allowance.

Other Grades:

In regards to other sectors:

  • 4 staff in Grade 2 will receive a 40.4% net pay increase
  • 37 staff in Grade 3 will receive a 38.7% net pay increase
  • 123 staff in Grade 7 will receive a 19.1% net pay increase
  • 93 staff in Grade 8 will receive a 16.5% net pay increase
  • 67 staff in Grade 9 will receive a 13.9% net pay increase
  • 34 staff in Grade 10 will receive a 13.8% net pay increase
  • 8 members of staff will be included in the new Grade 11
  • Deputy Permanent Secretaries will be included in the new Executive 1 scale
  • Permanent Secretaries will be included in the new Executive 2 scale

The Attorney General and Deputy Governor will be included in the Executive 3 scale

House of Assembly:

Since 2012 there has not been a review of Ministers and Members of the House of Assembly remuneration.

With the approval of the Integrity Commission, a new remuneration package has also been approved for Ministers and Members of the House of Assembly that with the exception of across-the-board increases, unlike the mainstream public service would not have benefited from previous increment or other increases in pay.

A total of $600,000 or 3% of the total pay and grading budget has been allocated to facilitate these adjustments.

Conclusion:

In concluding, let me be clear, no member of staff is losing in this review. For those who held allowances that have now been absorbed, this simply means we are now adding it to your basic pay, and you are receiving a minimum of a 10% increase after the absorption, which is beneficial to you as allowances are used a part of the computation for your terminal gratuity o pension payments.

Through this review employee in most cases, will receive more than a 10% increase to their net-pay.

This is the largest single-phased increase ever implemented by the Turks and Caicos Islands Government!

On behalf of the public service of the Turks and Caicos Islands I express profound gratitude to the Government of the Turks and Caicos Islands, in particular the Honourable Premier and Deputy Premier and Minister of Finance who without any reservations or hesitation, agreed to provide the financial and other resources that were necessary to undertake this review.

When the funding request was made, the Premier questioned whether we were sure that we could deliver the findings in 6 months or before the end of both the calendar and also the financial year.  We did not only deliver the findings Honorable Premier, we are actively working towards implementation within that timeframe as well, which could not have been done without you and your Cabinet’s support.

Thank you for agreeing the recommendations in totality, for your vision and leadership, and for making the public service one of your government’s key priorities.

Thank you as well to members of the private sector and regional bodies that participated in the market survey. This helped to provide us with a better understanding of the pay structure that currently exist outside of our government.

To the various associations, the Civil Service Association the Police Welfare Association, the Teachers Association and all ministries and departments across government for your participation in the various stakeholder meetings, thank you.

To the staff in the Office of the Deputy Governor, the Ministry of Finance, Attorney Generals Chambers, and other agencies for your engagement and work on this. To Ernst and Young for delivering a comprehensive, on time report and in advance to the Human Resource Management Directorate and staff in the Payroll Unit in the Treasury who we are certain will ensure that the job gets done and that our public servants are able to have a Happy Christmas by ensuring that these increases are reflected on their December payroll!

This marks a significant investment in the public service. We promise the government and people of these islands that we will diligently work to deliver on this and future governments mandate to the benefit of this our beautiful Turks and Caicos Islands!

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Town Hall De-briefing

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#TurksandCaicos, February 21, 2024 – Acting Commissioner of Police Christopher Eyre held a meeting with Her Excellency the Governor Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam and Member of Parliament for Grand Turk North, the Hon. Otis Morris, today (February 21st) at Police Headquarters, Airport Road, Providenciales.

The debriefing was to discuss concerns raised by residents during last evening’s Anti-Crime Town Hall meeting at the H.J Robinson High School, Grand Turk.

Commissioner Eyre expressed his deep appreciation to Her Excellency and Hon Morris for their attendance, saying that work was already underway to address the community concerns.

Commissioner Eyre said: “I acknowledge the challenges raised and wish to assure you that the Executive of the RTCIPF remains steadfast in ensuring the TCI is safe. We listened to your concerns, and I assure you that rebuilding trust and strengthening community-policing relations are top priorities.

“The RTCIPF has taken a holistic approach in the fight against crime. Increased visibility, greater stakeholder collaborations and ongoing dialogue forums to appraise you will occur. We are accountable to you.”

 

Photo Captions

Header: Town Hall Meeting Head Table (l-r) Superintendent of Prisons Michael Woodbine, HE the Governor Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam, Deputy Commissioner Rodney Adams, Superintendent Dean Holden, ag Commissioner of Police Christopher Eyre.

1st insert: HE the Governor Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam, MP Grand Turk North Hon Otis Morris and ag Commissioner of Police Christopher Eyre during this afternoon’s debriefing at Police Headquarters.

2nd insert: Grand Turk resident Derek Been addresses the head table during the Question and Answer segment

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Two Charged With Firearm Offences

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JERREAL MISSICK

#TurksandCaicos, February 21, 2024 – JERREAL MISSICK, 22, of Over Back, Grand Turk and SHAQUAZE FORBES, 21, also from Over Back, are expected to appear before a Magistrate charged with the following offences.

1) Gang Membership;
2) Possession of a Firearm;
3) Possession of Ammunition and
4) Discharging Firearm

Both Mr. Missick and Mr. Forbes were charged under the Anti-Gang Ordinance (2022) following an investigation into the discharging of a firearm incident that occurred on February 13th 2024, in Over Back.
The charges came after police officers consulted with the Office of the Director of Public
Prosecutions.

SHAQUAZE FORBES

Head of Crime, Safeguarding, and Public Protection Superintendent Dean Holden said: “This is another example of the Police Force’s relentless pursuit of those suspected to be involved in gang-related crime, specifically the criminal use of illegal firearms. This latest charge also demonstrates our continued use of the Anti-Gang legislation to target individuals who cause harm to our communities”.

The RTCIPF is asking the public to notify the closest police station, contact 911, the Serious Crime Unit at 231-1842,Crime Stoppers at 1-800-8477, and anonymously give any information on illegal activity.

Additionally, persons are encouraged to download the CrimeStoppers P3 app from the Google Play store or Apple Apps and share information anonymously.

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Government

Ministry of Home Affairs, Public Safety and Utilities and Telecommunications proudly Commissions the Yellow Wing

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Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands, 21st February 2024 – The long-awaited completion and commissioning of the Yellow Wing at the Department of Correctional Services took place in Grand Turk yesterday.

The event was attended by a number of Government functionaries; including Her Excellencies, the Governor and Deputy Governor, Ms. Dileeni Daniel-Selvaratnam and Mrs. Anya Williams respectively, the Premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands, Hon. Charles Washington Misick, Attorney General, Hon. Rhondalee Braithwaite-Knowles, as well as the Minister for Home Affairs, Public Safety and Utilities and Telecommunication’s Commission, Hon. Otis Morris.

Hon. Josephine Connolly, Minister for Tourism, Permanent Secretaries, Mrs. Bridgette Newman, Mr. James Astwood and Mr. Miquel Swann, newly appointed interim Commissioner of Police, Mr. Chris Eyre, Chaplains of the HoA and the Prison, along with staff of the Public Works Department, Department of Correctional Services and Olympic Construction were also in attendance.

The reconstruction of the Yellow Wing commenced in May 2020, following destruction of the building by fire in 2019.

The ceremony was chaired by Assistant Superintendent, Mr. Clyde Greene. Among the officials who brought remarks, were, the Superintendent, the Minister, the Deputy Governor, the Premier and the Governor; all of whom expressed their delight in being able to participate in and witness the commissioning.

In his remarks, the Superintendent of the Department of Correctional Services, Mr. Michael Woodbine expressed his thanks and appreciation to the Government and Ministry for the additional funding received by the Department, to assist with the resolution of a number of longstanding issues.

He went on to note, “The key function of the prison is not only to protect the public by keeping those who pose a risk out of society, but it also has a wider role to play in supporting law enforcement”

He further highlighted some of the Department’s community activities, support given in various areas and his department’s plans for the year.

The Minister for Home Affairs, Public Safety and Utilities and Telecommunication’s Commission, Hon. Otis Morris in his remarks stated, “Today marks a significant milestone, as we gather to celebrate the completion of the Yellow Wing. This project has been a collaborative effort; which demonstrated my Government’s commitment to providing a safer and more humane environment for inmates and staff alike.” 

Hon. Morris went on to note that the improvements made to the Yellow Wing would not only enhance the living conditions for inmates but would also contribute to the overall rehabilitation and well-being of those in the Department’s care.

In conclusion, he encouraged all to continue to work together to uphold the highest standards of safety, security and rehabilitation within our correctional facilities.

Following the hand-over of the keys, cutting of the ribbon and blessing of the building; attendees were treated to a Control and Restraint mock exercise to remove a non-compliant and violent person from a cell.

The team demonstrated the manner in which they calmly manage these very difficult situations, trying their best to de-escalate the person’s heightened mood and aggression. The Exercise was well received and the team was highly commended for their negotiation and team work skills.

The ceremony ended with the Vote of Thanks by the Deputy Superintendent Mr. Raymond Grant.

The Department of Correctional Services with the of support of the Ministry of Physical Planning and Infrastructure Development will continue the upgrade of the facilities at the Department of Correctional Services with the works to the Blue and Green wings.

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