Vergo workers win compensation claim

SHOPWORKERS union Usdaw has won compensation worth nearly two months’ pay for each of its members made redundant following the collapse of Vergo Retail in May last year.

Usdaw made a claim on behalf of its members and an Employment Tribunal in Liverpool has now awarded them compensation of eight weeks’ pay, the maximum payable in the circumstances.

John Hannett, Usdaw general secretary, said: “We are delighted with the tribunal decision and while the award can never fully compensate for staff losing their jobs, I’m sure our members will welcome the money and appreciate the effort Usdaw has made to secure this compensation for them.

“Cases like these really demonstrate the value of belonging to a trade union.”

The ruling affects members who worked at former East of England Co-op department and household stores which were sold to Vergo in 2009, only a year before the company collapsed.

The East of England Co-op has already paid compensation, on a voluntary basis, to long-serving former staff who lost their jobs following Vergo’s collapse.

Vergo staff who will receive compensation worked at stores in locations including Clacton, Colchester, Felixstowe, Gt Yarmouth, Harwich, Ipswich, Norwich, Stowmarket and Witham.

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Staff from five Vergo stores in the South-West and North-West will also benefit.

As Vergo is in administration, responsibility for the payments rests with the Government’s Redundancy Payments Office.