By Ben Simmons

The shopworkers Union Usdaw has won compensation worth eight weeks pay for each of its members made redundant following the collapse of Vergo Retail in May last year.

Usdaw made a claim on behalf of its members for a Protective Award after Administrators MCR failed to consult with the Union before making staff redundant.

The Employment Tribunal in Liverpool found MCR had failed in their legal obligations to consult with Usdaw and awarded its members compensation of eight weeks pay, the maximum payable in these circumstances.

“We are delighted with the Tribunal decision and while the award can never fully compensate for staff losing their jobs, I’m sure our members will welcome the money and appreciate the effort Usdaw has made to secure this compensation for them,” says John Hannett, Usdaw General Secretary. “Cases like these really demonstrate the value of belonging to a Trade Union.”

“What remains galling however is the fact that although it was the Administrators who failed to consult with Usdaw, it is the taxpayer who will ultimately pick up the bill for compensation.”

“As the law stands, Administrators can effectively ignore workers existing legal protections and contractual terms because they know it will be the taxpayer and not they who will end up paying any financial penalties for doing so. This is simply wrong and we will continue to campaign for fundamental changes in the law covering liquidations and administration to correct this and other injustices the current legislation permits.”

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