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Protesting TCL workers demand meeting

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Protesting workers of Trinidad Cement Ltd stormed the company’s Claxton Bay head office yesterday demanding a meeting with the management who failed to show up at a meeting on Monday.

Oilfields Workers’ Trade Union (OWTU) branch president for TCL Ahmad Mohammed described the communications by the management as a blatant disrespect to the workers and the union.

TCL workers have been protesting since last week.

The workers are protesting the company’s plan to retrench up to 100 workers from its 300-plus workforce.

Mohammed said a meeting was agreed upon by TCL and the OWTU to be held at the union’s Paramount Building in San Fernando.

He said during the day, the union received a letter from TCL stating that “they were not interested in meeting with any items such as the Memorandum of Agreement, which has been outstanding since 2014, the Cost of Living Allowance for casual and temporary workers and any other issue except redundancy and redundancy alone.”

Mohammed, who left the workers inside the compound to speak with the media, said they had a brief discussion with the general manager who promised to speak with his management team before returning with news for the workers.

He said senior union officials were also mediating their protests as workers were “very frustrated and very angry.”

“What we want is for them to reconvene a meeting between the parties because the writing and exchanging of love letters at this stage are not really solving any issues presently between the company, the workers and the union.

Contacted yesterday, TCL chairman Wilfred Espinet said he was unaware of the action taken by the workers.

However, Espinet said if it was true, the union ought to realise that such actions do not solve anything.

Up to late yesterday, the T&T Guardian was awaiting a response from TCL’s Group Public Relations, Michelle Langton.


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