Pilots seeks judicial review over CAL’s employment practices
By LAUREL V WILLIAMS Sunday, August 25 2013
TWO local airline pilots have filed an application for leave in the High Court to apply for judicial review against the decision of Caribbean Airlines Limited (CAL) to hire and employ foreign nationals.
The claimants, Captains Anthony Hamilton and Roger Bridgeman, filed the application at the Hall of Justice on August 19. According to a press release issued yesterday by one of the claimant’s attorney, Peter Taylor, it stated that the pilots were against the decision by CAL to hire and employ foreign national.
The foreign pilots aboard its aircraft were identified as Captains Andrew Campbell, Sean Carrington Patrick de Levante, Stephen Fontinelle, Kevin Lazarus and Heather Mc Kay.
The attorney added that co-pilots Marc Coley, Neil Crooks, Peter Henry, Gina Lazarus, Chesare Paul and Stephen Plimmer were aboard CAL’s TT registered aircraft without valid work permits. This he charged was in contravention of section 10 (2) of the Immigration Regulations made under the Immigration Act Chapter 18:01 of the Laws of Trinidad and Tobago.
All of the pilots and co-pilots are Jamaican citizens with the exception of Fontinelle, who is St Lucian.
The claimants together with another pilot, Captain Ann Marie Lewis, are former pilots with the now defunct BWIA and have a combined experience of some 85 years. They are contending that they have been unfairly overlooked for employment while Caribbean Airlines insists on hiring foreign nationals in contravention of the law.
Taylor stated: “The Claimants in their joint affidavit contend among other things that having pilots employed without valid work permits puts Caribbean Airlines at risk when entering the airspace of the USA and/or of being downgraded as an airline in breach of FAA and EASA (European Aviation Safety Regulations).”
High Court judge Justice David Harris heard the application, but deemed that it was not sufficiently urgent to be heard during the court vacation period.
Taylor, who is representing the claimants, is instructing attorney Farid Scoon.