The IWW TEFL Workers Union is supporting the staff at Language House London. Language House has closed down due to COVID-19, having failed to pay all staff the last month’s wages. The union has since learned that all employees were unlawfully misclassified as self-employed and that some ex-staff are owed wages going back to 2019.
The IWW gave Language House owner Toni Cammarota until the end 6th April to pay all outstanding wages. As this has not happened, we will begin both legal action and a public campaign to support our members and their colleagues at Language House. We will send out updates and callouts via email on the TEFL Workers’ Union Twitter (@TEFLUnion).
Below is a letter from William, one of the teachers at Language House, detailing the situation.
SAY NO TO WAGE THEFT AT LANGUAGE HOUSE LONDON!
LANGUAGE HOUSE LONDON – TIME TO PAY UP!
Greetings to all,
I am writing to tell you about the current situation at ‘Language House London’ (17 Hanover Square, Mayfair, London W1S 1BN) and to ask for your support.
I feel compelled to inform as many people as possible about the actions of this school whose practices have consistently ranged from dodgy and disreputable to potentially criminal.
In contrast to many of my colleagues I was very lucky; I only worked at the school for one month. Therefore I am only being unlawfully denied one month’s salary.
This is in contrast to a number of teaching, office and reception staff who are missing up to 3 months’ wages!
There have been a number of other ongoing issues at the school:
- All salaries having been paid significantly late over a period of at least 10 months.
- Teachers and staff that have left the employ of the school have had their last salary consistently withheld.
- During the Christmas period 2019, the school was closed between 19th December to 27th January, thus leaving the teaching staff with no work or income over this period.
- Incredibly the entire sales staff are still due to be paid for the last 3 months’ of work.
In addition to these points, all staff are unlawfully considered ‘self employed’ without hope of a contract meaning they are denied sick pay, paid leave, guaranteed hours, paid breaks, and paid trainings, meetings or planning time.
A critical factor to be illuminated is that, according to our research with Companies House, the business is registered to Ms Loredana Bolba when in fact the school is run, financed, and managed by Mr Antonio Cammarota. We have the official documents from Companies House showing that Mr Cammarota is currently banned from owning or operating a limited company within the UK. This ban commenced 18th February 2011 and is due to expire 17th February 2021.
As it stands, myself, my colleagues and members of the IWW have had no success in contacting any of the management staff as they have blocked their instant messaging services, deleted or blocked the companies email addresses and are refusing to answer any phone calls.
There are 20 members of staff all waiting for the school to pay up for the final pay period. The school is closed, the management are refusing to respond to all correspondence. If there was ever a terrible time to rob honest people of what they are owed it would be in the face of a global health crisis.
I appeal to you to help us in our campaign against the exploitative and destructive practises of Language House London and of Mr Cammarota.
Teacher, Language House London