TSSA claims victory after £20K redundancy pay-out for former Cook staff

Travel trade union TSSA has claimed a major victory for redundant Thomas Cook staff after winning payments worth more than £20,000.

The Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association, with its solicitors Morrish, has won a claim against Telecom Service Centres, also known as ‘Webhelp’, on behalf of five former Thomas Cook employees.

The staff, based in Larbert, were originally employed by Thomas Cook, some for more than 20 years.

They transferred to work for Webhelp under TUPE regulations about a year before the collapse of Thomas Cook in September 2019. They continued to work on Thomas Cook accounts but were based in Webhelp’s premises and when Thomas Cook collapsed they were made redundant.

The union argued successfully that redundancy payments had been traditionally paid by Thomas Cook on an enhanced basis, according to a matrix based on pay and length of service, for more than 20 years. It said that under TUPE these staff were entitled to redundancy pay on that basis, in line with their Thomas Cook contracts, rather than the statutory redundancy pay offered by Webhelp.

A three-day tribunal hearing found in favour of the union in March in the Glasgow Employment Tribunals. The payment awards were settled in November.

TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes said: “This represents a fantastic result for our TSSA members just before Christmas. I’m delighted that between them our members are sharing over £20,000 in settlements. That’s why every worker needs to join a union!”

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