I have to admit I am extremely pleased to see Ed Propst and several others conjure up people power in the CNMI for looking at ways to make change on the very livelihood of necessities on the islands. I do not discourage the movement that is created, I actually applaud the actions for now the PEOPLE's Voice is being heard.
I am sure our elected leaders see and feel the hardship and difficulties in our islands of Saipan, Tinian and Rota. I am sure they are looking at alternative means to lessen the burden placed upon the people such as the CUC ordeal, high market pricing on food and fuel and much more.
The task is now overbearing to be an elected official, but as we placed them in their seats, we must also provide the necessary time they need to make adequate and timely decisions to turn around the CNMI's economic condition.
Aside from all the blistering caused by CUC, fuel and increasing commodity pricing, businesses are suffering another battle. The wage hike. As this continues to take its place by law over the years, there is still a major problem, employers will still be fully responsible for alien workforce health benefits. Our local hirees do not get the same privileges and must fend for themselves on health and dental benefits offered by the companies or simply acquiring a personal health plan which on these islands, the prices are extremely HIGH.
I think that all personnel should be primarily responsible for their health plans and placed on equal status between the local and alien workforce. Currently, the alien laborers are receiving better benefits as compared to our local minimum wage earners. I know I read something in the papers about this issue, but nothing concrete is mentioned. How long shall employers wait?
I do not wish to express negative comments on the government and its duties to protect guest laborers, but we have to also ensure we protect our local wokforce. I guess, I am just venting as an employer myself...Hey Ed, can this be something brought up by the group next time around?
I hope so.