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Settlements-2006 to 2010

The National Workers Union reports settlement for the information of workers. If the cases we win have particular significance or set precedents then additional information will be given.

For list of current settlements see here. The cases settled for the period 2006 to 2010 include:

Settlements for 2010

Winter Winds A/C and R Parts Limited

31st December 2010 - The worker took a day off work to give blood for her mother-in-law. On her return to work she was suspended for three days. This was done without following the proper procedures of natural justice. When the worker applied for her vacation on her return from the suspension she was given a dismissal letter alleging "lack of communication""frequent absenteeism""showing disrespect" and "negligence". There was no hearing and the worker was not given an opportunity to respond to any of the allegations. The matter reached the Industrial Court but there was an out of court settlement of $15,000.

Medcorp Limited

22nd December 2010 -  Because the worker's Contract of Employment said that "six weeks notice must be given by either party for termination of employment" the employer simply gave six weeks notice to the worker and dismissed without any reason. An employer must have a reason (known as "cause") for ending the employment relationship and gave no reason in this case. The matter reached as far as the Industrial Court where, following conciliation, the parties agreed to a Consent Order settling the matter for $105,000.

Slot Spot (also known as St. James Private members Club)

9th June 2010 - The worker refused to sign a letter of resignation that had been written by her employer. At the Industrial Court, the union argued that "there was no cause given for the dismissal and no disciplinary or other procedures followed which would provide a basis for ending the employment relationship" . The Court concluded that "on the basis of all of the evidence adduced in this matter and in particular the two attempts by [the Company] to force the worker to resign, we have found that the worker was dismissed."  The Court awarded $30,000 in damages to the worker CT, but the Company has not paid. 

The Union has reported the failure to pay to the Industrial Court as a Contempt of Court matter and also registered the case in the High Court as a result of the non-payment.

Slot Spot (also known as St. James Private members Club)

20th May 2010 - Slot Spot is a casino. The worker was instructed NOT to pay a customer his winnings and when she refused and paid the customer she was suspended for three days for what the employer described as "insubordination". The worker was then dismissed for the same offence without any procedures being followed. Amongst other issues, this was a clear example of "double jeopardy" - that is, being disciplined twice for the same thing. 

The Industrial Court concluded that "the employer, therefore violated the basic principles of good industrial relations practice in the conduct of the enquiry. The evidence tendered in the Court, did not support the charge of insubordination. The action of the employer was therefore harsh and oppressive." 

The Court awarded $20,000 in damages to worker SG but the Company did not pay. The Union obtained a Writ of Execution which was served by a bailiff on 27th July 2011 and the money (plus interest) was secured. See the report dated 27th July 2011. 


The Union has reported the failure to pay to the Industrial Court as a Contempt of Court matter.

Sankofa Academy

13th May 2010 - Sankofa Academy is a small privately owned nursery school in Laventille. The worker was told by phone not to come to work one morning because there were not enough children and that she would be called later in the week. That call never came, but, instead, the employer kept on two On-the-Job trainees that were having their wages subsidised by the Government. The matter eventually went to the Industrial Court who agreed that the worker was unfairly dismissed but only awarded $1,600 (one month's salary) because the nursery school was in Laventille and they did not want to impose a settlement that might close the nursery. They did this on the grounds of balancing the the "community interest" with that of the worker.  Interestingly, the worker also comes from Laventille and was unemployed for 3 months following her dismissal. 

Slot Spot (also known as St. James Private members Club)

15th March 2010 - The worker was employed at  Slot Spot Limited which is a Private Members Club. The employer put a Memorandum on the Staff Notice Board barring the worker from entering the premises. This was, in effect, a dismissal. There was no hearing and no explanation to the workers as to why she had been barred. 

The worker had received a "severance payment" from the Company amounting to $8,400 and in addition, the Court awarded a further $25,000 be paid to the worker AL but the Company has not paid.

The Union has reported the failure to pay to the Industrial Court as a Contempt of Court matter and also registered the case in the High Court as a result of the non-payment.

The Company has appealed this matter to the Court of Appeal.

Evolving Technologies and Enterprise Development Company Limited

4th March 2010 - The worker was summarily dismissed due to "... a number of performance related issues." Once there is a summary dismissal - that is, a dismissal without notice - then unless the employer goes through procedures that resemble "natural justice" then it will be difficult for them to justify their position. In this case, the matter was settled in conciliation at the Ministry of Labour for the sum of $40,000

Settlements for 2009

Trinidad & Tobago Housing Development Corporation

7th October 2009 - A contract worker with the Housing Development Corporation had asked for leave at her appointment interview and was told that it should be OK. The leave was required to organise a major community activity which eventually resulted in the worker being awarded a National Youth Award. The day before leave was to be taken it was formally refused leaving the worker in the difficult position of having a major event collapse or take the leave that had been verbally agreed. She took the leave and the employer dismissed her for "wilful disregard of a decision and unauthorised absence". The worker had only worked for the HDC for three months and $15,000 was agreed as terms of settlement in conciliation at the Industrial Court. 

National Gas Company

23rd July 2009 - The worker was entitled to a lease vehicle and, at the end of the lease period, had an option to buy the vehicle on terms set out in the Company's Transportation Policy. The Company unilaterally changed the terms of the Transportation Policy arguing that it was part of the Company's Human Resources Manual and they were entitled to change it. The Union took the position that the Transportation Policy had been incorporated into the workers Contract of Employment and could not be unilaterally changed by the employer. The case originally started in 2007 but was not settled until 2009 because the Company originally took the view that it would NOT deal with the Union.

In an out of Court settlement, which was registered in the Court, the Company accepted that the Transportation Policy was part of the contract of employment and agreed to honour the workers contract of employment in full.

O. J. Supplies and Services Limited

24th June 2009 - the employment relationship between the worker and the Company had broken down and the Union negotiated a "package" to enable to worker to leave. This included outstanding bonus and vacation leave. A final figure of $11,626.06 was agreed and paid. 

BG Trinidad and Tobago

10th June 2009 - The worker was employed by British Gas Trinidad and Tobago Limited as a Community Liaison Officer but paid through Kenson Operational Services LimitedBritish Gas undertook an investigation into allegations against the worker but never held a hearing, gave the worker any details about the investigation or gave him an opportunity to reply to the allegations. British Gas then instructed Kenson Operational Services to dismiss the worker.

British Gas argued that the worker was not employed by them but by Kenson Operational Services. The Union argued that Kenson Operational Services supplied the worker to British Gas on a labour only contract and therefore British Gas was the employer.

In determining that British Gas was the employer and that the dismissal had been unfair, the Court made the point that "the Industrial Court ... had stated very clearly time and time again that, except in special circumstances, workers have the right to be heard and they must be given the opportunity to exercise that right".

The Court, in decision GSD-TD 278 & 280/2009 , awarded compensation of $65,500.

Gayelle TV

4th May 2009 - A video of the worker accidentally damaging two vehicles in the Company car park resulted in the worker being dismissed - not for damaging the vehicles, but for denying that the incident had taken place when the evidence was overwhelming. However, the Company withheld $2,068.98 from the workers outstanding vacation and the Union disputed that the employer had the right to made unauthorised deductions from the worker's outstanding money. The $2,068.98 was returned.

Settlements for 2008

Junior Jacky trading as Absolute Approvals

17th July 2008 -The worker was verbally dismissed and given one month's notice when she advised her employer that she was pregnant. The employer denied that this was the reason. A settlement of $15,000 was agreed at the Ministry of Labour.

Pricemart 

26th May 2008 - The worker was given two days in which to "pull your act together" and then instantly dismissed four days later (two days of which were a weekend) without a hearing. Following negotiations at the Ministry of Labour, the letter of dismissal was withdraw and replaced by a letter of resignation, a good reference was guaranteed and the worker was paid $50,000 compensation. 

Schrader Camargo Ingenieros Associados S.A.

4th March 2008 - This matter originally started in March 2007 when this Colombian Company dismissed nineteen (19) workers in the Safety and Health Department with no notice and had them escorted of the compound by security. The matter was part heard in the Industrial Court (GSD-TD 86/2007)but an out of Court settlement was agreed for $275,000.00, which was distributed amongst the workers by the Union on a formula agreed between the workers.

Josef's Sports Bar

21/2/08 - Dismissal settled at Ministry of Labour for $10,000

Settlements for 2007

R & R Transport Tours and Rentals Limited

19/03/07 - Settled bilaterally. $14,000 for a dismissal.

Barana Seafood Processors Limited

02/04/07 - Settled bilaterally. A settlement of $13,500 arising out of a dismissal without notice.

Young Men's Christian Association of Trinidad and Tobago

05/04/07 - Settled bilaterally. $10,000 for dismissal.

Settlements for 2006

A Regional NGO

28/07/06 - The name of the employer cannot be released because of a confidentiality clause in the settlement. Settled bilaterally. Total compensation for dismissal US$15,000.

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