Ex-LIAT staff told accepting government’s offer could lead to full compensation

As tensions between the government of Antigua and Barbuda and former LIAT employees continue to heighten, Prime Minister Gaston Browne has suggested that the staff could receive their full compensation, starting with accepting the offer proposed by his administration.

Since more than 90 percent of the airline’s staff were temporarily then permanently laid off in April 2020, they have been calling for their complete severance and other entitlements, totaling nearly EC$120 million.

The Antigua and Barbuda government has partially responded to that call, offering the staff a ‘compassionate payment’, while maintaining that they have no legal obligation to compensate, as the company is currently under administration.

The government has been going back-and-forth with the unions and other representatives of the former LIAT staff about that compassionate offer – 50 percent of the severance owed – but the workers are adamant that they deserve more, despite the poor financial state of the airline.

As part of their efforts to retrieve what they believe they’re owed, they have also urged the other shareholder governments – Barbados, Dominica, and St Vincent and the Grenadines – to join with their Antigua and Barbuda counterpart to reach a collective agreement.

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