Labour Tribunal hearings on hold till new chairman appointed
The Labour Arbitration Tribunal has suspended all hearings until a chairman is appointed to the post.
This was confirmed by the Minister for Labour Melvin ‘Mitch’ Turnbull.
The previous post was occupied by local attorney Jamal Smith. He was appointed to the post back in August 2020 and his appointment lasted for two years. Smith was the first Virgin Islander to assume the position.
“The Labour Tribunal Chairman, his appointment ended I think it was at the end of July. So, we are actively seeking through the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Labour. We have advertised to continue to try to have that position filled [and] without the chairman of the board, the cases cannot be heard,” Turnbull said.
Three days ago, the government released an advert seeking applications for qualified people to fill the vacancy.
“Applicants must be an attorney-at-law of at least 10 years with good standing, should be able to manage their time commitments to meet the tribunal’s objectives, be trustworthy and confidential, be able to make legally-sound, fair and equitable decisions, possess personal qualities of high integrity and credibility,” the advert said.
The Labour Arbitration Tribunal is an independent body set up under the Labour Code, 2010. It has the power to make orders and awards with the same force as an order or award of the High Court.
Persons/parties appearing before the tribunal are entitled to the same rights or privileges, as they would have before any court.