Kevin Bonello, President of the Malta Union of Teachers and For.U.M.
“The top proposal is the accreditation of prior learning. This is very important in a context where the country is solely dependent on workers and skills, while at the same time also heavily reliant on qualifications. Persons who were educated in former times could not access the qualifications that exist today but they have accumulated experience and skills that even university graduates need years of experience to acquire. We expect, now more than ever, in a market with a shortage of highly skilled workers, that persons are empowered to be assessed on their skills and their experience (+ assessment) converted into a qualification. Qualifications should include Levels 5, 6, 7 and 8. For some strange reason, this has been on the political cards for years but as yet the NCFHE is not doing this process to the detriment of hundreds of skilled workers who would like to find better opportunities.
Mr Bonello said the current economic situation is definitely much better than what it was until a few years ago. “For.U.M is expecting budget measures that reflect this reality. Moreover, we expect governmentrelated collective agreements that are currently being negotiated to reflect this economic progress substantially. From a workers’ point of view, the budget is not the main thing, but the collective agreements are.”
In reply to the third question, Mr Bonello named the GWU and For.U.M’s proposal on the re-inclusion of compensation for public holidays that fall on weekends for workers.
Mr Bonello said For.U.M has made many proposals on traffic, including banning heavy and large commercial vehicles and horse-drawn carriages from arterial roads during peak hours.
Students at secondary school level should be given free bus passes to go to school on public transport, the number of traffic lights should be reduced and a light car-ferry service should be introduced in the Grand Harbour and Marsamxett. For.U.M is also advocating forward planning and infrastructure upgrades.