Members have issues with Albert Street Taxi Union

Last month the men of the Albert Street Taxi Union were tangling with City Hall concerning their parking spaces on Albert Street in the wake of the renovation of Battlefield Park. That has been resolved but now there is concern of internal wrangling in the union with regard to its management. Driver and former executive member Albert Robinson gives us details.

Albert Robinson – Taxi Driver, Former Executive Member:
vlcsnap-2013-05-16-20h17m00s170They went directly into finance.  The Treasurer gave his report. They haven’t had a meeting.  We get to understand they haven’t had a meeting with members for over one year.  They have been there from 2010 till now. [They] have no intentions of calling no elections, which contravenes our Constitution.  These are the things we are against.  We have a lot of members that just sit back, relax and don’t say anything.  What happens is that only the head table always dictates.  Their main priority as executive members is to collect dues from members and grow the kitty, and no benefit is mentioned.  So you could ever just di collect dues, no benefit, and expect members just to satisfy. 
The stand does not belong to Albert Street taxi Drivers’ Union.  We only have permission to use it. So [we] don’t see why we should be paying dues to use the car stand to Albert Street Taxi [Drivers’] Union, and we having no other benefits, and the City Council is not getting anything.  We have suggested years after years that we wanted to lease the Albert Street Taxi Stand, so we could make contributions to the City Council, despite of our license, our insurance, and whatever contribution we make.  so that is our gripe.  Every time they call a meeting is because they need to collect dues from members.

Robinson insists that the drivers have not been getting value for money.

Albert Robinson – Taxi Driver, Former Executive Member:
That’s what I’m saying.  We need the finance, but then again talk to us about benefits, because when a union is being run and we ask for finance from members, is to really have some kind of benefits for the members. The finance is used, like for instance, we had two members that have passed just the other day. Mr Orosco passed.  When he passed they pick up some money for Mr Orosco. They didn’t have to pick up no money.   They have money and the Credit Union.  The money was removed from First Caribbean Bank to the St John’s Credit Union, which Mr Kenneth Garbut is a member of. So he did that to please himself, to begin with.  I don’t have any problem with the Credit Union.  [Mr Garbut] is a part of the Credit Union. I think he serves on their board, if I’m not wrong. That’s what I think he has been doing. He’s serving now as Secretary/Treasurer of the taxi union.  Our Secretary had died.  He was ill, and he took up both posts, and make it worse.  We needed that election so as to relieve him of one of those posts, because we don’t even have minutes of our meetings to date.  We haven’t seen minutes of our meetings to argue of what we have passed in passed meetings.

We will continue to follow this story.

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