Pegasus Hotels of Jamaica Ltd v The Bustamante Industrial Trade Union
Industrial Disputes Tribunal
Lynch, C.; Plant, R.; Dixon, R.
IDT 5 of 1976
Labour Law - Industrial Disputes — Wage Increases
Labour Law - Labour Law — Industrial Disputes — Improved Conditions of Employment
The Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment, by letter dated 3 rd February, 1976, in accordance with section 11(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 disputes –
(a) in relation to wages and conditions of employment between the Pegasus Hotels of Jamaica Ltd. On the one hand and the unionized workers represented by the Bustamante Industrial Trade Union on the other hand arising out of the union's letter of claim dated 11 th September, 1975; and
(b) the union's claim for pay for the unionized workers between January 15 and the date of resumption.”
The division of the Tribunal selected in accordance with section 8(2) of the Act was –
Mr. Basil Lynch
Mr. Owen Plant
Mr. Edward Dixon
The Employer was represented by –
Mr. Emil George (Legal)
Mr. Peter Judah (Legal)
Mr. D.A. van Zantwijk
Mr. P.W. de la Perrelle
Mr. I.E. Brown
Mrs. J. Chang
The Trade Union was represented by –
The Rt. Honourable H.L. Shearer
Mr. L. Beckford
Mr. E. Williams
Mr. St. Clare Shirley
Written briefs were submitted by the parties and oral submissions were made at the eight (8) sittings held between the 7 th June and 25 th October, 1976.
The parties agreed that part (a) of the dispute should be determined now and that the Tribunal should resume to hear submissions on part (b).
The Union and the Company entered into a Collective Labour Agreement in 1974, which expired on 11 th November, 1975.
By letter dated 11 th September, 1975, the Union served an 18 point claim on the Company for increased wages and improved conditions of employment — this 18 point claim was later reduced to 13 points as set out in the Appendix attached. There are approximately two hundred (200) workers in the bargaining unit.
In addition to the existing weekly wage rates, the workers participants in the proceeds of a “service charge” of 12 1/2% which the Company imposes on all its bills for room, food, beverages, etc. The proceeds are distributed weekly on the basis of a “points” system according to the category of workers as indicated by the following examples;
AVERAGE WEEKLY SERVICE CHARGE 1975
Chef de Partie
The Company commenced operations in 1973 with an authorized share Capital of $3.6m (ordinary J$1 shares) of which issued and fully paid up amounted to $3,509,335. By agreement dated 8 th April, 1976, the Government has agreed to acquire the 60% interest in the shares formerly owned by British Airways and Trust Houses Fore — 17.3% of the share capital was raised on the local market and the balance is owned by International Finance Corporation and Barclays Bank.
The Company entered into a Management Contract with Fortes Holidays Limited (now assigned to forte's Jamaica Limited) to manage the hotel for an initial 7 years commencing 30 days after the hand over of the Hotel and (unless a year's written notice is given by either party) for a further 14 years.
The Management fees payable are the sum of;
(a) 3% of the Hotel's gross revenue; and
(b) 7 1/2% of the Hotel's annual gross operating profit.
The terms of this Management Contract were strongly criticized by the Union during the hearing — the Board of Directors will no doubt and in due course consider the validity of the criticisms.
The net financial out turn of the Company form its inception to the end of 1976 is shown below;
1973 ( 1/2 year)
Accumulated Deficit to 31/12/76
The Tribunal has taken into account;
(a) the financial position of the Company,
(b) the existing state and future outlook of the hotel industry,
(c) the existing wage rates paid by the company and their relation to the Wage Guidelines, and
(d) the fact that it was disclosed during the hearings that the company had made the following offers;
(i) to introduce a Group Life Insurance Scheme limited $5000 per person and an Accident Insurance Scheme covering accidental death, disability and dismemberment limited to %5000 per person and provided that the accident occurs on the job, and
(ii) an across-the-board wage increase of $8.40 per week.
The Tribunal awards that the Group Life Insurance Scheme and the Accident Insurance Scheme as proposed by the Company be introduced as soon as circumstances will permit.
The Tribunal awards an across-the-board wage increase of $8.40 per week to be effective for 2 years commencing 12 th November, 1975.
As regards the other items of claim Nos. 1 –...
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