Monday 9 December, 2019

TCL workers protest new breathalyser policy

Stock photo.

Stock photo.

Trinidad Cement Limited (TCL) has been accused of bullying its employees following the implementation of a new breathalyser policy by management.

Beginning Monday, staff were made to submit to a breathalyser test before they would be allowed onto the company’s Claxton Bay compound. Those who refused to submit to the test were denied entry.

TCL OWTU Branch President Ahmad Mohammad told Loop News TCL acted in a high-handed manner as the recognised majority union was not consulted in the matter, and as a result, employees will not be adhering to this new mandate.

The workers staged a demonstration outside TCL early on Monday, as they say the new initiative imposed is in breach of the law.

Mohammed said the company is insistent it can move forward with the new policy without consulting the Union, however, he said the imposition of such a measure is a change of the terms and conditions of the workers' employment. 

'It's a flagrant breach of law," Mohammed said.

Describing the new policy as punitive, the OWTU Branch President said it not only affected the workers, but anyone else in the vehicle they were in entering the premises – including spouses and passengers if the employee was travelling in a taxi.

He said the Union has already escalated the matter through its Central Executive and is seeking dialogue with the company.

While it’s awaiting a response from TCL management, the Union says it is prepared to go the industrial relations route to have the matter resolved.

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