BVI News

Persons laid off in ‘improper manner’ told to report matter to Labour Department

Labour Minister Vincent Wheatley is urging all residents who may have been laid-off or terminated in an improper manner to report the matter to the Department of Labour & Workforce Development.

In a recent public broadcast, Wheatley said the department’s Disputes Unit will be dealing with all related matters.

“I would like to remind employers to be considerate to their employees by notifying them of any changes to their employment agreement prior to contacting the Department of Labour & Workforce Development. It is only fair,” the minister said.

“Although the parameters for lay-off and termination has been set, we recognise that there may be employees who may feel that they were not handled in an appropriate manner, and these matters should be heard and addressed,” he added.

Minister Wheatley urged all persons who are in need of assistance with a dispute to email labour@gov.vg so an appointment can be made for them to have a teleconference meeting with a dispute officer within the department.

Amendment for extension lay-off period before Cabinet

Wheatley, in the meantime, said the extension to the lay-off period that was announced in March is one step closer to being finalised as the amended Bill is now before Cabinet.

According to the Labour Code, 2010 Section 104(3) and 107, if an employee is laid off for more than three months without a date of re-employment, the employee is entitled to severance pay, if terminated.

Minister Wheatley said the amendment will seek to ease the burden of businesses having to pay severance packages during the COVID-19 pandemic, as some businesses may be forced to close for a longer period than the allotted three months allowed under the law. 

Once the lay-off period is extended, the minister said some jobs can be saved as employers will not be forced to terminate employees if they are made to close more than three months because of the pandemic.

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16 Comments

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  1. No severance pay. says:

    Rushed legislation for no severance pay after being laid off for more than 3 months with no sure date of re-employment? Sounds like government getting ready to lay off somae people.

    Like 4
    Dislike 2
    • Huh! says:

      Whilst the Govt has made some sensible decisions, I am not sure they are ready to make cuts to our boated civil service!

  2. Anon says:

    NOTHING WILL COME OF THIS. I HAVE A CASE IN THE LABOUR DEPT FROM 2010 DUE TO NON-PAYMENT OF WAGES AND 10 YEARS LATER I HAVE NEVER HEARD ANYTHING. BVI IS A VERY SMALL COMMUNITY THAT DOES NOT FAVOUR EXPATS…..

    Like 25
    Dislike 3
    • Hopeless case at labour says:

      I have sought the assistance of labour since 2016 in a matter where my employers refused to pay me wages and other benefits but because it’s the labour commissioner’s friends nothing is being done.

  3. Anonymous says:

    pure rubbish you want put a extension on layoff period do you no how hard it is be pay your bills for three month with out work watching your saveing going talking about safeinvg my job for me bullshit help paysome bill for me when am off so long gov. i vote agains that law☟

    Like 5
    Dislike 1
  4. 2020 says:

    Only one word to make application of: EMPATHY.

    I had tenants that left in a worthless way owing bills … one does not run and hideaway … these kind though you leave to God because he says vengeance is his … he will repay.

    I could tell you though, based on what all they did someone who does not have God speaking to them would have skinned them without mercy. When I think about the deaths around the world because of this COVID thing, what they did I considered soooooooo insignificant and not wanting to give the Devil the upper hand as well as lose out on the blessings that will come from God for being obedient and leaving the matter to him.

    Like 3
    Dislike 6
  5. Charnele says:

    Some of these employers are securing themselves and don’t care much about their employees. They don’t want to fire you and since they don’t know how long this current situation will last they are temporary suspending your employment, useing the term temporary suspending means they don’t have to pay severance. Imagine you have worked for over 25 years with an employer and is currently not working and will not be able to receive severance if out of a job for three or more months. Is this fair?

    Like 8
    Dislike 1
  6. Wrong things are happening!! says:

    This can’t be because ***** construction in Virgin Gorda treating their employees like criminals… this morning they had them( vincy National) excited the island this morning with police officers and immigration officers like criminals… This not the BVI treatment this is wrong how they going about this situation…

    Like 3
    Dislike 8
  7. Hmm says:

    Yuh the mask man them?

    Can’t recognize anyone in this pic … they all mask up.

    Like 2
    Dislike 2
  8. Chris. says:

    This is a lie. A week before the first lockdown *** const co gave 16 workers a week’s notice of termination and the employees were paid the full severance pay and vacation pay the following week along with the hours they worked of their notice period. The lockdown occurred and the borders closed. Other company employees asked if they could go and be with their families in St Vincent during the closure of the company and located an airline who would do a charter flight .
    A flight was chartered by *** and the employee who started the arrangement located enough persons to fill the flight. The Vincentians who had been terminated and paid severance were advised to go on the flight as they had no jobs and nobody knew what the future held and they had only been in the BVI for 18 months so could not find other work without leaving the territory. Some did not want to go home for unknown reasons and 3 of them turned out to have not even paid to renew their work permits last year so were illegal anyway . This despite all paperwork being ,done ,for the renewal at the time.. Several of the people on the flight have valid permits and the company expects them to return to work in the BVI after the borders reopen in September. It is normal for immigration to be present when anyone leaves the territory and police are also usually present if someone who is here illegally is leaving. This is the truth of the matter.

    Like 15
    Dislike 2
  9. Tongue Fu says:

    Where is the independent tribunal for hearing labor disputes? Why has it taken soo long to be formed? Most employees do not trust the labor department as evidenced by some of the posts so far.

    Extending the 3 month furlough period also places the employees at a disadvantage as Employers can wait 6-9 months keeping them in limbo and then potentially terminating their employment.

  10. vincy here mi com says:

    the bvi (American Us $) not available like before time to leave…

  11. Waste of time says:

    Waste of time. Nothing will be done. In there so corrupt. Employees go to labour to cry about mistreatment and abuse by employers and before they walk out the door friends in there done call the employer to let them know said employee came to complain about them. The whole civil service, there’s a major issue with confidentiality. Every last department.

  12. ghutty says:

    one lgot fired at … because he went to pay his electrical bill. he stayed about two before returning to work and he did came back to work and finish his day but that was it after. he was a goner just like that.

  13. ghutty says:

    After working for a company 10yrs plus, there are employers who targetted those employees so they would leave empty handed, no severence pay, nothing. Thats what the goverment should look into, because people here in the bvi work for companies 10 plus years and was terminated just like that because what! they dont want to pay you anything so they fire you just so. when you go to labour, the company/ies are friends with the ministry due to the fact that the company already buy them out by giving them handouts etc. so we are workers always in the losing zone.

  14. Peace says:

    Users of men,that’s what some of these people are,how is it possible to lay off someone for more than three months without pay then want to extend that, please it’s not fair. You knows that,lot of these employers using covid-19 to take money from employees, that take work hard for and the government help these criminals. Just how much more for employers,

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