McCowan’s workers get £200,000 redundancy pay-out

By Dan Colombini

- Last updated on GMT

103 workers at the former McCowan's factory have been awarded 60 days pay, totalling £200,000
103 workers at the former McCowan's factory have been awarded 60 days pay, totalling £200,000

Related tags Management

Former workers at sweet manufacturer McCowan’s have been awarded more than £200,000 in compensation after the firm was found guilty of failing to meet legal obligations before going into administration last year.

The Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers (Usdaw) confirmed that 103 employees of the former Highland Toffee maker had been awarded compensation, as a result of McCowan's failing to consult with the union before making its members redundant.

New McCowan’s Ltd went into administration on September 16. Production at its factory in Stenhousemuir, Scotland was immediately stopped and all workers were sent home.

Despite efforts to find a buyer, administrator Grant Thornton confirmed on October 4 that the firm had ceased trading. The factory, which had been producing sweets since the 1920s, was to remain closed, USDAW revealed.

Employment tribunal

As a result, the union made a claim on behalf of its members at the site, which was upheld at an employment tribunal in Glasgow yesterday (February 16). The workers were awarded compensation of 60 days pay.

Alan McVie, Usdaw area organiser said: "It has become apparent that McCowan’s knew they were in financial difficulty some months before they finally collapsed into administration. Yet the union and workforce were kept totally in the dark.

“Usdaw may not have been able to help save the company, but McCowan’s failure to consult with us and their workforce was a missed opportunity and in the circumstances quite unforgivable.

McVie also revealed that many of the workers at the site had yet to find new jobs following the closure of the factory.

He added: “Unfortunately, the majority of our members at McCowan’s have still to find new jobs so they’ll really welcome this compensation and I’m sure appreciate the effort Usdaw has made to secure it for them.”

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