Trade unions to discuss staff severance with LIAT

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Trade unions leaders from across the region who represent LIAT workers are to meet with the airline’s management in the coming weeks to discuss severance for workers.

This move comes just days after the regional carrier announced plans to lay off workers in all departments for another three months.

In April 2020 the company announced the suspension of its passenger service, which was further extended by mid-May with no firm date set for resumption.

A number of staff members were also sent home and were expected to return to work on June 30.

However, in an email to union leaders on Friday, the management of the Antigua-based carrier stated that while they have been engaged in adhoc charter and cargo activities, this is insufficient to cover the company’s cost.

According to the email, LIAT is dependent on the receipt of funds from the major shareholders to meet ongoing costs, and these funds continue to be delayed.

The company said, given the current circumstances, it was therefore forced to extend the temporary lay-off period for another three months and during this time employees will continue to receive their medical insurance coverage and staff travel privileges.

The extension has not gone down well with trade union leaders who are still not pleased with the manner in which staff had been sent home.

A source close to the company told our newsroom that with the extension of the lay-off period, severance is now due and payable to LIAT workers.

Talks towards this and other benefits for workers will be high on the agenda in the coming weeks.

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