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Union enforces docks overtime ban

Retailers face delays in getting their goods after union bosses enforced an overtime ban at Hamilton Docks.

The Bermuda Industrial Union has instructed about 25 workers to stop putting in any additional hours after contract negotiations collapsed.

The dispute began when workers were asked to come in just three or four day a week depending on the number of ships arriving. Bosses insisted they were trying to eradicate “non-productive time” due to the reduction in cargo volume.

However, the workers declined this offer and managers at Stevedoring Services then suggested layoffs as the only alternative.

In response to this the BIU port workers division gave five days notice and its overtime ban is now underway.

The impact of the overtime ban will be felt this weekend with the Oleander arriving on Sunday. Its containers will not start to be unloaded until Monday, a day later than usual.

BIU president Mr Furbert said negotiations had failed even though they had taken other proposals to the table, including a four-day week for all workers.

He said: “I understand non-productive time is a huge concern for the employer, but they benefit from overtime work. The ships have to be able to keep to their schedule.

“I know only too well how this will cause delays for retailers. The overtime ban is going to have a trickle-down effect. It’s going to cause some inconvenience”.

Mr Furbert said they could not go to arbitration to solve this employment dispute as overtime was not guaranteed work.

Photo by Glenn Tucker ¬ The Bermuda Islander on loads its containers at the Dock in Hamilton in Thursday.

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Published August 11, 2011 at 1:00 pm (Updated August 11, 2011 at 1:36 pm)

Union enforces docks overtime ban

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