Construction boss Burt sued by Jamaican ex-employee

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  • Albert Ricketts, a Jamaican national, has filed a writ against his former Bermudian employer, Germaine Burt of Burt’s Top Grade Contracting. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

    Albert Ricketts, a Jamaican national, has filed a writ against his former Bermudian employer, Germaine Burt of Burt’s Top Grade Contracting. (Photo by Mark Tatem)

A Jamaican national who alleges his Bermudian boss fired him without cause and violated his civil rights has now taken legal action against his former employer.

Attorneys for Albert Ricketts have filed a writ in Supreme Court against Germaine Burt, owner of Burt’s Top Grade Contracting. The filing states the writ is “in matter of the employment act, occupational safety and health regulations and human rights act.”

Mr Ricketts is one of four Jamaican guest workers who, in June of this year, told The Royal Gazette they had filed complaints with the Department of Labour, the Human Rights Commission and the Department of Immigration claiming that their former employer, Mr Burt, breached several sections of the Employment Act and Human Rights Act and grossly mistreated them before they were wrongfully dismissed.

Among other claims, the men insist Mr Burt never paid them sick, public holiday or vacation pay and did not always pay their health insurance or social insurance, despite deductions being made from their paycheques.

The men lost their jobs at Burt’s Top Grade Contracting on March 27 when Mr Burt handed them letters stating they were being let go due to an “unexpected drop-off in business dues to the faltering economy”.

At the time this newspaper first reported the story back in June, attorneys for the men said that the mistreatment went beyond financial issues.

“This isn’t simply a case of us trying to get monies back for these gentlemen that was not paid to them. It’s much bigger than that,” said Nancy Vieira, an attorney for Amicus Law. “Our concern is what comes after that. It’s how these men were treated. It goes against their basic human rights. We have to use this case as a precedent to make necessary changes.”

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Published Oct 5, 2012 at 1:38 pm (Updated Oct 5, 2012 at 1:37 pm)

Construction boss Burt sued by Jamaican ex-employee

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