UNI’s Turkish affiliate, Güvenlik IS, has filed a criminal complaint against Swedish cash-in-transit company, Loomis. The filing comes after several union activists were threatened by managers with dismissal if they continue their union membership.
The charges in the union’s complaint, which has been accepted by a prosecutor, indicate that Loomis is breaking the commitment to freedom of association it made in the global agreement signed with UNI Global Union and the Swedish Transport Workers Union.
Loomis management in Stockholm denied that their local management is guilty of anti-union practices in Turkey and declined to step in or accept mediation. Their refusal to engage with the union left Güvenlik IS with no other options than the legal action, filed last year and accepted by prosecutors earlier this month.
The union, which represents private security workers, has been organizing workers to win recognition under Turkish law. However, as soon as the union filed for recognition, the union busting backlash began.
Local Loomis managers started an anti-union campaign by intimidating, threatening and even dismissing 43 union members.
Workers at Loomis in Turkey have been calling out the company for harassment of union activists since it took over G4S’s operations in the country. Despite widespread support from the workforce and crossing the legal threshold for recognition, the substandard working conditions and demands that the company addresses serious issues in the workplace have been ignored.
“These are serious violations that require an immediate action from the company,” said Head of Property Services Eddy Stam. “However, the company has stonewalled us for months, even refusing the participation of our Turkish union representatives.”
“Güvenlik IS and UNI will keep pushing until the unlawful dismissals are compensated, and the company respects workers’ right to freedom of association.”