Vincent Morrison, President of UCASE
It appears that despite news of a stay on US sanctions against Windalco's parent company, Russian aluminium producer UC Rusal, financial institutions remain fearful of associating with the company.
On Monday, the workers at Windalco were issued a communique from the company's General Manager advising that they would only receive a quarter of their monthly salary on Tuesday.
Based on the statement, the workers should have received 50 per cent of their salary and the remainder on May 28.
Instead they will receive 25 per cent on Tuesday and the remaining 75 per cent on May 28.
In outlining the reasons for the delay, Windalco's Managing Director stated that it was a forced one time payment measure caused by the change of operating accounts due to denial of service by some financial institutions.
RJR News spoke with Glendon Johnson, Director of Industrial Relations at Windalco on Tuesday morning, who confirmed that there was a change to the payment schedule for this month.
He said a meeting was held on Monday with staff regarding the matter and an agreement had been reached.
He declined to comment further.
Vincent Morrison, President of the Union of Clerical, Administrative and Supervisory Employees (UCASE), who represents the majority of workers at Windalco, said the union was also contacted by the company's management, who indicated that it was trying to put in place alternative arrangements.
Mr. Morrison said he is aware the company has been experiencing challenges due to the impending sanctions.
He said the union has been in constant communication with Windalco through Mining Minister Robert Montague.
According to the UCASE president, the workers it represents will remain calm and understanding while Windalco and its parent company resolve the company's predicament.
Late last month, the US announced a four-month stay of the implementation of sanctions on UC Rusal.
Rusal, which has owned WINDALCO since 2007, operates more than 40 plants across 13 countries.
The US Treasury has given American companies until October 23 instead of June 5 to wind down business with Rusal.
It said it would consider lifting the impending sanctions if Rusal's major shareholder, Russian tycoon Oleg Deripaska, ceded control of the company.