Dr. Timothy Harris, Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis.
Dr. Timothy Harris, Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis.

Prime Minister Timothy Harris extends his heartfelt condolences, and those of the Government and people of St. Kitts and Nevis, to the family and loved ones of Joseph Emanuel O’Flaherty, the President of the St. Kitts-Nevis Trades and Labour Union,who was a son of the late trade unionist Joseph Fidel O’Flaherty.

Joseph Emanuel O’Flaherty died just after midnight on Labour Day, Monday, May 6th, 2019, at the age of 48 years old.  He was born in Nevis on December 6th, 1970.

“Joseph O’Flaherty was highly involved in a wide range of civil society activities and was particularly devoted to advancing labour-management relations and protecting the working class through consultation and negotiation,” Harris said while reflecting on the life and work of O’Flaherty.

Harris added, “As a consultant specializing in project management, Joe had a breadth of knowledge and experience that was informed by his work as a past Board Member and Acting Board Secretary of the St. Kitts Electricity Company (SKELEC), a past General Secretary of the St. Kitts Farmers’ Cooperative Society, and a past Acting National Secretary of the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party.”

Harris went on to note that, “Additionally, the National Tripartite Committee on Labour Standards benefited from his membership, as well as the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Council, the National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council, the National Minimum Wage Advisory Committee, the National Poverty Assessment Committee and the Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF) Oversight Committee.  He was also a Member of the St. Kitts & Nevis Association of Professional Engineers, having attained a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Management with an emphasis in Chemical Engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla.”

He also assisted in finalizing the Strategic and Operational Plan 2012 – 2015 for the St. Kitts Investment Promotion Agency (SKIPA) and served as Project Manager of the Youth Empowerment through Skills (YES) Programme from 2009 to 2011.

In 2012, Joseph O’Flaherty became the President of the St. Kitts-Nevis Trades and Labour Union and served in that position until his death.  In 2014 and 2018, he was a Member Delegate (Workers’ Representative) for St. Kitts and Nevis at the International Labour Organization’s Regional Meeting of the Americas in Peru and Panama, respectively.  He was also a Member Delegate (Workers’ Representative) to the 104th Session of the International Labour Conference, which was held in Geneva, Switzerland in June 2015.

Harris extends deepest sympathy to Joseph O’Flaherty’s family and loved ones, including his colleagues who worked closely with him on behalf of workers’ rights.