Scores of GMB members have won the right to claim compensation after they were sacked without notice by their employers.
The members were made redundant by parcel delivery firm Amtrak, based in Aldridge, when it went into administration in August last year.
The firm gave no notice to hundreds of its employees, including a substantial number of GMB members.
Under employment law where more than 100 employees are made redundant, workers must be consulted at least 90 days in advance.
Birmingham Employment Tribunal heard staff had been told three weeks earlier that their jobs were safe, but turned up at work one day only to be told to go home.
Following the redundancies the GMB instructed Thompsons Solicitors to pursue its members’ case at tribunal.
The tribunal awarded the maximum amount they could at 90 days pay. Unfortunately because the company is in administration the members can only claim a maximum of eight weeks pay at £330 per week which they will have to claim from the Redundancy Payments Office.
Free Legal Service which provides top class solicitors
GMB represents over 611,000 UK workers all of whom are covered by GMB’s free Legal Service which provides top class solicitors to GMB members and protects them from “No win No fee” lawyers ensuring that all compensation is paid directly to the person effected.
Former Amtrak employee Julie Francis, 50, from Aldridge, was able to find alternative work within a week, but knows many of her former workmates are still job hunting.
She said: “We turned up at work like any other day only to be told we no longer had jobs. We couldn’t believe it. I’ve been fortunate to find another job quickly, but many of my former colleagues are not as lucky. In the current climate they will struggle to find work and this compensation is going to be a great relief for them and will hopefully tie them over for a while.”
Joe Morgan, GMB West Midlands Regional Secretary added: “This is a great result for our members who were unceremoniously sacked. Many GMB members have families to support and during these difficult economic times they cannot afford to be out of work. This compensation does not make up for the fact that they are now on the dole, but it will go some way towards helping them during these difficult times.”
Gerard Airey from Thompsons Solicitors added: This case highlights the importance of trade union membership, without which many of these employees would not know they were entitled to compensation.”