Oranjestad, St. Eustatius- A group of 5 employees of General Engineering Corporation (GEC) on St. Eustatius have been left totally in the dark by the Company, when it comes to their employment status.
While the company on the one hand insists the employees were not ’terminated’, they were on the other hand provided with a letter of recommendation and they have not received any salary for the past five weeks.
Al For One (AF1) interim president Charles Woodley is assisting the employees of GEC, which is a subsidiary company of Tampa Tanks in the USA.
“I can simply not get my head around how a big international company would treat its workers like this”, said Woodley in conversation with the BES-Reporter Tuesday evening.
According to Woodley the employees in question had already been employed by CEG for quite some time, in some cases as much as 9 years. GEC’s actions leaves the employees in a dire situation, without any work, without income and with no clear answers. “These people have bills to pay and they have been left without any income for over a month now”, said an angry Woodley.
Although the help of SZW in Bonaire was enlisted to solve the situation, much progress had not been made in the matter. “Due to the measures around the Corona-virus the inspector from SZW can not make it to Statia. And the parent company of GEC in the US simply does not answer any calls”.
Woodley said that if the labor agreement is to be terminated this should be done in a legally correct manner. “We have laws about how a labor agreement can be legally terminated, and companies are supposed to abide by them”, said Woodley who added that until employment contracts are legally terminated, the employees are entitled to their full salaries as well as payment of the Cessantia for years worked in the employment of GEC.