Unfair Dismissal claim prompts lone-ranger picket

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A one-woman picket has been taking place since last week outside the St. John’s Cooperative Credit Union by a woman who claims she is owed money for an unfair dismissal matter that should have been closed on October 31st 2018.

Thalia Parker-Baptiste was Business Development Officer for the credit union from 2013 to 2017 when her position was made redundant.

She said that after informing the cooperative’s manager about some unethical issues, she was informed that her department was to be shut down.

“I was told that my position was going to be made redundant, but there would be a new position. However, on December 29th [2017] when I got my pay-off, I realized there was no letter carrying [me] forward,” she told OBSERVER media.

Upon meeting with the Antigua Trades and Labour Union (AT&LU), Parker-Baptiste said the credit union created an excuse – saying they were very busy – and proceeded to inform the Labor Union that she would be recalled to work in a week.

She said that in April 2018 she saw a newspaper advertisement for the same position, but under the title of ‘Marketing Officer.’

Parker-Baptiste considers herself to have been a top-notch employee who went above and beyond the call of duty for the cooperative.

“When I went, they were opening 30 accounts per month; they are now processing over 120 loans monthly,” she added.

The woman also said she was forced to dispense with her lawyer’s services because the credit union was dragging out the matter.

Disheartened by the entire matter, the former credit union employee said, “What has happened has really hampered my finances in particular. I have a nine-year-old and we are struggling. And it is very unfair that they are dealing with this in a very nonchalant manner.”

She was paid only a fraction of the monies owed on December 7th and she is particularly unhappy about that.

Baptiste picketed across from the Credit Union twice last week, and she says she will be picketing again today.

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