In a powerful global action, Amcor workers in 17 countries coordinated this month to together demand that the company engages with the Amcor Global Trade Union Alliance.
The union alliance meets regularly, and one key priority of the group is to establish coordinated dialogue with the global management. The group has repeatedly approached management over several years, always being told that global management will not engage.
Now the alliance showed it will not accept this company refusal. In a powerful showing of global solidarity and unity, 32 union representatives and union delegates at Amcor from 17 countries sent the company the same letter in their respective languages on the same day this month.
The letter reads: “All trade unions through Amcor’s operations at national level around the world are affiliated with one or both global trade unions UNI and IndustriALL. These global unions have over 100 well-functioning Global Framework Agreements with leading multinational companies. Through these agreements unions and management agree to work together to ensure minimum standards throughout the business, in a spirit of dialogue and consultation.
“We seek a similar working relationship with you and your team.”
The alliance has waited two weeks for a response, and now goes public with its criticism of the company’s refusal to recognize its global industrial relations partner.
President of the Amcor Global Trade Union Alliance, Lorraine Cassin says:
“How can this management refuse the opportunity to engage with our alliance. Several industry leading multinational companies in this industry engage with our global unions in dialogue that benefits workers and the company. Amcor workers everywhere have the right to be respected, recognized, and listened to by management. We will not stop demanding this basic right.”
The Amcor Global Trade Union Alliance brings together Amcor worker representatives from around the company’s operations in all regions. This body works together to strengthen the rights and conditions of all workers throughout the company’s operations.
Management’s justification for not engaging with the alliance on a global level is that they do not want to confuse global discussions with local ones. However, the alliance does not seek to disrupt this local level dialogue and believes international dialogue can successfully engage on key issues such as health and safety, core labour rights, and problem cases that are not solved locally. This is the model that works at other companies in the industry and what is demanded by Amcor workers internationally.