Errol McLeod Biography

Many people are interested in Errol McLeod because of the important contributions he has made throughout his lifetime as a labour leader of the oil workers of Trinidad and Tobago. The biography below begins at the start of his life and fills you in on some of the many things he has accomplished.

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Errol McLeod

Errol McLeod was born on May 30, 1944 in La Romain, San Fernando.

  • McLeod began his career in the oil business in the year 1960. At this time he made the decision to join the Texaco Apprenticeship Training Scheme.
  • Upon finishing his apprenticeship at Texaco, he went on to work at the Pointe-a-Pierre Refinery.
  • While employed at this refinery, McLeod held many positions. Two of the positions that he held were as an electrician and a refinery operator.
  • After working for a number of years at the Pointe-a-Pierre Refinery, in 1971, McLeod was elected to be a member of the committee of the Oilfields Worker Trade Union (OWTU) to represent the Pointe-a-Pierre employees of the refinery.

McLeod and the OWTU

Perhaps the most important and interesting part of the Errol McLeod biography is the accomplishments he had while with the OWTU; it is for these accomplishments and his contributions to labor unions that McLeod is remembered:

  • McLeod served two years on the OWTU before being elected as the President of the Pointe-a-Pierre branch of the OWTU.
  • The Pointe-a-Pierre branch was the Oilfields Worker Trade Union’s biggest branch.

In the year 1980, McLeod had two additional achievements concerning the OWTU:

  • He was moved from his position as the President of the Pointe-a-Pierre branch and he was made a general relations officer.
  • He became the Second Vice President of the union as a whole.

Rising Up the Ladder

In 1982, McLeod continued his rise up the ladder with the OWTU and he was bestowed several additional achievements in this year.

  • The first was the honor of becoming the OWTU’s First Vice President.
  • The second honor occurred when he was elected to the position of the Chief General Officer of Public Relations.
  • McLeod also helped to found the United Labour Front.

During the whole time period surrounding his rise within the union, he was also elected as representative of the Oropouche Constituency. This allowed him a seat within the House of Representatives. This honor was bestowed upon him in 1976.

Becoming the President

Errol McLeod's career with the union topped out in 1982 when he had reached the highest position possible, President of the OWTU. McLeod held the position as president of the OWTU throughout the rest of his career, until he retired in 2008.

During his time with the union, McLeod is best known for the improvements that he made in the lives of the union employees.

  • He made sure that wages were improved for a number of employees.
  • He ensured daycare facilities became available at each facility for employee’s children.
  • Employee housing, medical, and pension plans were improved enormously under McLeod.
  • McLeod advanced the idea of profit sharing.
  • McLeod is also recognized by employees throughout his country for his role in the Occupational and Safety Act.
  • Additionally he began a scholarship program through the union, providing the chance for employee’s to send their children to college through a union supported scholarship program.

Throughout the years of his life he has become known to his people primarily because of his involvement in the advancement of social justice through his role in the OWTU. After his retirement from the OWTU he was named Minister of Labour and Micro Enterprises in Trinidad and Tobago in 2010.