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Pressure Will Stay On Government Over Thomas Cook - Cortes

3 October 2019

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has promised to keep the pressure on the Government over Thomas Cook after discussions with Ministers and the liquidator.

Cortes was speaking after attending a meeting of the Government’s Thomas Cook Taskforce in Manchester yesterday (Tuesday 2nd) which discussed jobs, redundancy and compensation payments for former workers.

Manuel Cortes said “At meeting of the Taskforce I once again pressed Government Ministers and the liquidator to pay our members what they are owed.

“I am pleased that the liquidator told me that they have now processed 99 per cent of the 5000 claims they’ve had for redundancy payments.

“They have made interim payments totalling over £18 million with more to follow. However, not every worker who lost their job has applied for redundancy. It's vital they do so as quickly as possible.

“Those who were dismissed without notice or consultation have a legal claim for compensation and we have asked the liquidator not to contest such claims. This will result in payments being made to our members in a more timely fashion and without having to resort to litigation.

“Of course, if they don't, we will take legal action on behalf of our members at no cost to them which shows yet again the benefit of being part of our TSSA union family. The liquidator has agreed to consider our request and respond to our union in writing.”

At a meeting of the Government’s Thomas Cook Taskforce in Manchester TSSA was told that 99 per cent of 5000 applications for redundancy have now been dealt with.

Payments are only being made for what is due in redundancy, and over £18.4 million has been paid out. However, a significant number of ex-Thomas Cook workers are yet to apply for redundancy.

TSSA also challenged the liquidator to give assurances in writing that they won't contest protective award claims – a compensation award of up to 90 days' gross pay for failure to inform and consult in cases of dismissal on the grounds of redundancy.

It was also revealed that Thomas Cook had a support and wellbeing programme for staff that has been kept going by the liquidator until at least the end of this month.

Also – it emerged that there are over 1500 Thomas Cook staff still in employment helping the liquidator wind-up the company and assisting with the repatriation.

They have been given notice that their jobs are at risk of redundancy and consultation of sorts is taking place with them. 

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