April 17, 2009
Blue Skye employees demand pay

The few remaining employees of the hundreds who worked at the Arnos Vale telemarketing company, Blue Skye Communication, are demanding that their employer pays them the combined $100,000 or so owed to them.{{more}}

Last year, the eight-year-old company began the process of downsizing its staff, claiming that they are feeling the pinch from the global financial crisis, which is affecting its overseas clientele.

Additionally, Searchlight is informed that the staff members who remained were paid a month late, which the employees who visited SEARCHLIGHT said that they didn’t mind, because they were trying to be loyal to their employers.

“We thought that by holding on, we were lending support to the company when it was going through difficulties,” one employee, who along with the others who visited SEARCHLIGHT’s office, wished to remain anonymous, said.

The group, which included sales representatives and supervisory staff told SEARCHLIGHT that in November 2008, everything broke down.

They said that several promises were made to them by officials of Blue Skye, including the latest word that outstanding payments would have been made by April 6th.

“The last thing they said is that we would have received one month’s payment at the end of March and all outstanding payments by April 06th,” the upset employees explained on Wednesday, April 15th.

Prior to this assurance, they were promised that they would have received all outstanding payments by the end of February.

“So many promises and nothing coming, people have their bills to pay,” one young lady told SEARCHLIGHT.

“I want my money. This is too long overdue and it seems to me that every time it comes time to receiving money for our work, we have to be asking for it…when am I going to get paid so I can put food on my table?” one employee asked officials of Blue Skye in a recent e-mail.

Individual disgruntled employees have made reports to the Labour Commissioner.

However, Labour Commissioner Patrice Roberts Samuel confirmed to SEARCHLIGHT that a group of 14 employees of Blue Skye Communications lodged a complaint at her department.

Roberts-Samuel told SEARCHLIGHT that ever since her department started to receive complaints about Blue Skye in February this year, they have been trying, to no avail, to get in contact with officials of the company.

“The next step is to officially inform the Minister (of Labour) about what is happening,” she said.

Meanwhile, SEARCHLIGHT was able to get a short statement from the company, after several futile attempts to reach Chief Executive Officer Desmond Morgan for comment.

“Amounts in excess of $1 million are owed by our US clients as a result of the current economic depression in the USA. Several of our clients have pledged to make payments shortly,” a statement emailed by Chief Financial Officer Egbert Charles said.

“As a result, some of our workers’ payments have been delayed. We are hoping that this will be resolved very soon so that the company can resume operations with an expected re-employment in excess of 100 persons,” the statement ended. (KJ)