Marold of Jamaica Ltd v The Bustamante Industrial Trade Union


Industrial Disputes Tribunal

Lynch, C.; Plant, R.; Dixon, R.

IDT 30 of 1976

Marold of Jamaica Limited
The Bustamante Industrial Trade Union

Labour Law - Industrial Disputes — Wage Increases

Labour Law - Industrial Disputes — Improved Fringe Benefits


The Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment, by letter dated 31 st May, 1976, in accordance with section 11 subsection 1 of the Labour Relations and Industrial Disputes Act, 1975, referred to the Tribunal for settlement, an industrial dispute between the EMPLOYER and the TRADE UNION.


The Terms of Reference to the Tribunal were as follows –

“To determine and settle the dispute which exists between Marold of Jamaica Limited on the one hand and its employees represented by the Bustamante Industrial Trade Union on the other hand, over the Union's claim for increased wages and improved fringe benefits.”


The division of the Tribunal selected in accordance with section 8(2) of the Act was –

Mr. Basil Lynch


Mr. Owen Plant

Employers' Representative

Mr. Edward Dixon

Workers' Representative


The EMPLOYER was represented by –

Mr. Frank Barrow (Legal)

Mr. Leon Salkind


The TRADE UNION was represented by –

Mr. Lascelles Beckford

Mr. Givan Freeman

Several Worker/Delegates were in attendance


Written briefs were submitted by the parties and oral submissions were made at the two sittings held on the 20 th September, 1976 and the 1 st October, 1976.


The Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Company and the Union expired on the 31 st October, 1975 and by letter dated 21 st October, 1975 the Union served a 7 point claim on the Company for increased wages and other improvements in working conditions.


Particulars of the Claim are set out hereunder;

1. Work Week

All workers to be on a Forty Hours (40 hours) work week.

2. Sick Leave

  • (a) All workers to be granted two weeks sick leave per annum, after a qualifying period of six weeks.

  • (b) Un-used sick leave to be paid for at the end of each Calendar year.

3. Probationary Period

Probation periods of Six weeks to be implemented.

4. Vacation Leave

Vacation Leave to be granted after one years' service on the basis of:–

1 — 3 years, 2 weeks per annum

3 — 6 years, 3 weeks per annum

6 — 10 years, 4 weeks per annum

10 years and over, 5 weeks per annum.

5. Maternity Leave

Four weeks maternity leave with pay after a qualifying period of one years' service.

6. Severance Pay

Severance payment to be made after a qualifying period of one years' service, on the basis of:–

1 — 3 years, 2 weeks per annum

3 — 6 years, 3 weeks per annum

6 — 10 years, 4 weeks per annum

10 years and over, 5 weeks per annum.

  • (b) Severance payment to be made to workers if period of lay-off exceed one month.

7. Wages

  • (a) The establishment of a sixty dollars ($60.00) weekly minimum, for all categories of workers.

  • (b) Weekly minimum must be tied to any production level.

  • (c) Once production levels are set and this surpass, then additional payments must be on a pro-rate to be negotiated.

  • (d) The setting of production levels must be agreed to by the Unions.

  • (e) Other categories to be granted wage increases are:–

    • Cutters — thirty-two Dollars and Fifty Cents ($32.50) weekly Spreader — thirty Dollars ($30.00) weekly Mechanics — Forty Dollars ($40.00) weekly

    • Office maids — Twenty Dollars ($20.00) weekly.

The Company has indicated:

  • (a) that its business, as garment manufacturers for export is at present in a precarious position because of its inability to compete with low cost producing countries such as Taiwan and Hong Kong.

  • (b) that it sustained a loss of over 1/2 million dollars on its operations during 1975/76 and that the outlook for the future is not good;

  • (c) that it could only afford an increase of $4.00 per week to the skilled categories alone and that any appreciable award over and above would result in closure of the business.


Unaudited statements of accounts for the years 1974/75 and...

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