WICB endorses WIPA
Urges peaceful resolution between players and representative body
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (CMC):The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) fully endorsed WIPA as the sole body to negotiate on behalf of the region's players, and says it will only get involved in the ongoing impasse between the players union and the West Indies squad in India if invited to do so.
This comes against the backdrop of pronouncements by the West Indies one-day squad, currently in India, that the Wavell Hinds-led WIPA no longer had the authority to speak on their behalf.
However, in a letter to players' representative, Dwayne Bravo, WICB president Dave Cameron said that, according to the recently signed collective bargaining agreement and memorandum of understanding (CBA/MOU), WIPA remained "the sole and exclusive collective bargaining representative recognised by the WICB" for all persons contracted to play for any West Indies team.
"What this effectively means is that we will only engage in discussions relating to the welfare, working conditions and remuneration of cricketers with WIPA," said the letter, a copy of which was obtained by CMC Sports.
The Windies team had written the WICB last week indicating they had lost confidence in WIPA and would seek an alternative bargaining agent. The players are upset with the terms of the CBA/MOU, which, they have argued, will result in a 65 per cent decrease in their earnings.
They contend that Hinds, the WIPA president and chief executive, had not been clear on the terms of the newly signed CBA/MOU and stressed they were "collectively determined" not to accept any contracts stemming from the agreement.
However, Cameron told Bravo the new CBA/MOU represented a forward step and was a departure from the "uncertainties and confusion" of past agreements.
"I would point out to you our view that the new MOU/CBA creates a clear, sustainable, long-term compensation structure, so that we avoid the uncertainties and confusion associated with previous one-off negotiations on a case-by-case basis and the loose, informal arrangements of the past," Cameron wrote.
"One of the major benefits of this structure is that players' compensation is based on players earning a percentage of WICB revenue; so that we are engaged in a true partnership - where WICB benefits financially, the players will also benefit.
"The agreement also creates the framework for WICB and WIPA to comprehensively address the use of players' image rights - so that both WICB and the players may benefit in relation to such usage. Further, it creates the opportunity for players to earn substantial amounts based on merit - by implementing financial rewards for on-field performances."
The WICB chief urged the players to focus firstly on completing the current series against India and before dealing "with your grievances at the appropriate time and in the appropriate manner as provided for by the rules of your association".
West Indies face India in the fourth one-day international tomorrow in Dharmasala.