Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Time for a Raise?

My comments that the salary here is completely inadequate (I even said that is why I'm only staying a year rather than the originally believed two -- which is true to a point) are clearly not working. Now I've received this notice from the U.S. Embassy and I feel that I need to make my case a bit more directly as it is clearly a safety issue:

WARDEN MESSAGE

THE EMBASSY OF THE UNITED STATES IS TRANSMITTING THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION THROUGH THE EMBASSY WARDEN SYSTEM AS A PUBLIC SERVICE TO AMERICAN CITIZENS IN SRI LANKA. PLEASE DISSEMINATE THIS MESSAGE TO ALL U.S. CITIZENS YOU KNOW, WHO ARE NOT REGISTERED WITH THE EMBASSY.

Warden Message Feb 5, 2008

On February 3, 11 civilians were killed and approximately 100 were injured when a suicide attacker detonated an explosive device inside the Fort Railway Station. On February 2, a bomb on a bus from Kandy, headed for Anaradhapura, exploded at Dambulla and killed 18 civilians and injured over 50. In January 2007, two bombs on public buses outside Colombo killed more than twenty people and injured dozens more, and an explosive device was detonated in the Fort Railway Station, causing no injuries.

In light of such attacks against civilian targets traveling in buses and trains, American citizens are strongly advised against traveling by bus or train in Sri Lanka. The U.S. Embassy is prohibiting official Americans from using these modes of transportation.

In the current security situation, the Embassy again cautions American citizens to defer non-essential visits to crowded public places and high-profile public venues.

The Embassy reminds American citizens to continue to be aware of their surroundings and vigilant about their personal security. As always, Americans are advised to be on alert when visiting government facilities and high-profile public venues. Americans should also continue to avoid military installations, military convoys traveling on the roads and, where possible, government buildings, as they have in the past been targets for LTTE violence. There are likely to be traffic disruptions as Sri Lankan security forces increase their security checks. Americans are again reminded to cooperate fully with Sri Lankan security forces as they implement increased security measures.

3 comments:

tj said...

"prohibiting official Americans"? What about the unofficial variety? ;)

Fair point about public transport, although to be honest - travelling during peak times leaves a whole heck of a lot to be desired, even without the dangers of exploding suicide bombers.

Being a bit presumptuous, but from what I know (and have gathered through your writing), I think dressing it up as a safety issue is less likely to sway them. Just walk up and demand a raise "because you're worth far more than the pittance being paid now". Perhaps I'm projecting unfairly, but making it a safety issue is liable to be met with incredulous snorts (pfft. we travel in buses too etc)

Jessica L. said...

That is the point though -- they aren't taking buses. At least not at the staff level they consider me to be. They all have cars and drivers and I have my bike. It is pretty ridiculous.

rastiadu said...

from my limited experience working with a Sri Lankan based NGO, the general rule of thumb has been foreigners who are willing to come to Sri Lanka on a pittance = insane. Insane people are not meant to be reasoned with.

Good luck to you though, when it comes to negotiating finances I know how incredibly frustrating it can be, esp when you know you deserve way more. Not just in terms of money, but also in terms of respect.