Labour tribunal launched in the Brac

Cayman Brac now has its own Labour Tribunal dedicated to dealing with employment issues on the Sister Islands.

Taking the initial step in making the service fully operational, volunteers met in the Brac last week to receive formal training from Cayman law firm, Appleby Spurling Hunter. This is the first time that such comprehensive training has been provided to any Labour Tribunal, said a press release from the Ministry of Education, Training, Employment, Youth, Sports and Culture.

The Cayman Brac Labour Tribunal will provide a body to receive and hear issues pertaining to private sector employment in the Brac, as provided for under the Labour Law. Tribunals typically provide benefits for both employees and employers and it is anticipated that the creation of the new Brac tribunal will meet with a consensus of approval among the local community, the release said.

The establishment of an effective vehicle for settling disputes will also serve to promote fair and best practice in the workplace.

This latest development in the provision of employment services follows calls earlier in the year by Employment Minister Alden McLaughlin for volunteers to assist in the delivery of this critical public service.

The Minister’s calls were met with an encouraging response and it is anticipated that new appointments to the Grand Cayman Labour Tribunals and the Labour Appeals Tribunal will also be made shortly.

The Cayman Brac Labour Tribunal is composed of four respected local business figures: Ellen Lazzari, Dennis Ebanks, Lenny Neckerman and Theresa Tibbetts. Mrs. Lazzari, local businesswoman and Chairperson for the Cayman Brac Labour Tribunal is thrilled to take up her new role.

‘It is an honour to serve my community and be a part of the historic Labour Tribunal for the Sister Islands,’ she said.

Expressing his gratitude to the new appointees Mr. McLaughlin said, ‘Sitting on a Labour Tribunal is no small commitment. I am sincerely grateful to our volunteers for giving up their time to perform this most vital of public services and I commend them for their civic-mindedness.’

The Minister also thanked Appleby Spurling Hunter for facilitating the donation of services by volunteer associates Ward Sykes and Chris Johnston to conduct training for the new Tribunal members.

‘I am delighted by the generosity of Mr. Huw Moses and Mr. Nick Joseph of Appleby Spurling Hunter, and their volunteer staff, for helping to equip Tribunal members with the tools to perform their role effectively.’

Representatives of the law firm also took the opportunity to host a dinner with Cayman Brac MLA Moses Kirkconnell and members of the local community.

The Minister added, ‘This is an exemplary demonstration of productive public-private partnership. There are always ways in which the private sector can provide support for government initiatives. Similar assistance is being sought for the Tribunals in Grand Cayman and we would be delighted to hear from potential corporate supporters.’

Nick Joseph, Head of the General Litigation Practice Group at Appleby Spurling Hunter also expressed his gratitude to the trainers, Mr. Sykes and Mr. Johnston, who he described as having ‘grabbed’ the opportunity to assist and share their expertise.

Both Mr. Sykes and Mr. Johnston considered the training session to be a resounding success, and are confident in the abilities and motivation displayed by the tribunal members.

Mr. Sykes commented, ‘Both Chris and I were impressed with the dedication and abilities of the new members and are confident that Cayman Brac will be well served by its new Tribunal.’

There are a number of cases waiting to be heard on Cayman Brac and scheduling is commencing at present. It is anticipated that this latest Ministry initiative will facilitate the swift resolution of outstanding issues, help lead Cayman Brac into a new era in employment relations and facilitate growth in the local economy, the release said.

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