Airport security workers await letters

Antigua Trades and Labour Union
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Airport security workers await letters

Unread post by bimjim » ... 9&ac=Local

Airport security workers await letters
Wednesday March 04 2009

Security workers at the VC Bird International are awaiting an official letter from the Antigua and Barbuda Airport Authority (A&BBA) informing them of their transition to the authority.

This comes several days after the Antigua Trades and Labour Union (AT&LU) had threatened to instruct workers to down tools if certain outstanding issues are not settled by 19 Feb., but this did not materialise after the matter went before Labour Commissioner Hesketh Williams.

The AT&LU put the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation on alert with respect to the long, outstanding issues surrounding the status of security officers, annual vacation leave, honorarium and severance.

“Workers are now waiting to be written to officially. The other issues were dealt with at the Labour Department. Those areas are taken care of; it is just now that the workers are waiting to be written to officially,” General Secretary of the AT&LU Stafford Joseph told Antigua Sun.

According to Joseph, some workers are still waiting to go over to the authority. He said the transition is an ongoing one but it has to be completed by the end of June this year. A meeting was held a few weeks ago between the union and official from the Ministry of Tourism concerning the matter.

The payment of an honorarium to security officers who are said to have unofficially acted in supervisory roles at the airport is one of the matters that came up for discussion between the ministry and the union. The meeting also discussed the approval of annual vacation leave to workers and the manner in which security officers would be transferred to the Airport Authority. Both issues have been amicably resolved.

On 14 Nov., security officers at the airport called in sick, almost crippling the operations at the airport. Upon the instruction of the AT&LU, their various shifts were sufficiently filled to restore full operations at the facility.

AT&LU realised the importance of having the workers at the airport and advised them to return to work. These issues have been the source of contention between the workers and government as the airport transitions to be managed by the Airport Authority, a statutory body.
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