Public sector workers wishing to apply to the Special Early Retirement Programme (SERP) now have until the end of the month to do so.
The decision to extend the deadline from 16 February to 28 February follows a request from HR practitioners at a meeting held this week to get feedback on the SERP. Among other things, they noted that especially for regional offices, a little more time is needed to collate and process applications as well as to give persons who received their application packs late, more time to consider their options.
To apply to the SERP, applicants must meet the following criteria:
- Be between the ages of 50 and 59 years;
- Be permanently employed to the Government of Jamaica;
- Have ten years’ qualifying service with the Government of Jamaica; and
- Be eligible to retire early as per the rules of the Pensions Act.
Health professionals, security forces, correctional officers and teachers are exempt.
The SERP operates under specified terms, including:
- It is the employee’s choice to apply for the SERP.
- The head of an organisation will decide which applications can be approved.
- Organisations will be able to replace approved SERP participants only up to the value of 15 percent of the savings generated by the SERP.
- Incentives are built into the SERP.
- Re-employment of persons who retire under the SERP will be restricted.
Among the incentives included in the SERP are the offer of two weeks’ salary for each year of service up to a maximum of one year’s salary and payment in lieu of accumulated vacation leave. The SERP is designed, as far as possible, to ensure that the process is fair and takes into account both the needs and preferences of the employee as well as the needs of the employer to ensure that the organisation remains sustainable. The option to apply under the SERP is strictly voluntary and is expected to contribute to reducing the size of the public sector wage bill as a percent of GDP.
For further information contact:
Communication & Public Relations Branch
Ministry of Finance and the Public Service
30 National Heroes Circle
Tel: (876) 932-4656/4660/4655
Contact: Elaine Oxamendi Vicet/Kadisha Sharp