Toyota Motor Corporation V Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation Workers' Association (TMPCWA)

Overview

NCP Decision Accepted
Current Status Suspended
Date Submitted 04/03/2004
Case Duration 771 weeks and 3 days so far
Host Country Philippines  (Non-adhering country)
Issue(s) Illegal dismissal of 233 union members who participated in a strike and the filing of criminal cases against union leaders
Provisions Cited II.2  IV.1-a  IV.6   
Case Description In March 2004, the Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation Workers' Association (TMPCWA) submitted a case to the Japanese NCP regarding the anti-union behaviour of Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation (TMPC), a subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corporation. The company had refused to enter into collective bargaining negotiations with the TMPCWA as a result of which the union called a strike.

The complaint alleges that TMPC refused to organise Certification Elections (CE) as stipulated by law. When CEs were eventually held in March 2000, TCMP challenged the result (which was favourable to TMPCWA), refused to open negotiations, and launched various administrative appeals against TMPCWA.

On 16 March 2001, the Philippine authorities reaffirmed TMPCWA's legitimacy. On the same day, 227 leaders and members of the organisation, who had participated in a strike action during the previous month, were unjustifiably dismissed. Some leaders were charged with criminal offences.

The TMPCWA then filed a case in the courts against TMPC asking for a withdrawal of the illegal dismissals.

In September 2003, the Supreme Court of the Philippines ordered TMPC to begin collective bargaining negotiations with the TMPCWA. The company, however, ignored the court decision.

In February 2003, the union submitted the case to the ILO Committee on Freedom of Association. In November 2003, the Committee made the following recommendations to the Philippines Government: 1) To reinstate the 233 union members; 2) To start the Collective Bargaining Agreement immediately in order to establish sound labour relations; 3) To withdraw the criminal case; 4) To accept an ILO delegation; and 5) To amend the relevant legislative provisions of the Labor Code of the country.

Developments The Japanese NCP carried out an initiall assessment and accepted the case in 2010. In 2012 it reported that the process was ongoing. But since then TUAC is not aware of any progress. No information on the case was reported in the 2013 report of the Japanese NCP to the OECD. The history of developments is given below.

In September 2004, the TMPCWA wrote again to the NCP as six months after submitting the case it still had not been informed of whether the case merited further examination.

In December 2004, the Japanese NCP responded saying that "the matter is still under examination and the initial assessment has not yet come to an end. We are of the opinion that the case of TMPCWA is still at bar at Court of Appeals".

In its reply to the NCP, the TMPCWA explained that the Supreme Court had already turned down the ruling of the Court of Appeal to suspend the union’s right to collective bargaining. It also expressed its disappointment with the NCP’s treatment of the case.

In February 2005, the Support Group for TMPCWA met with the NCP, which maintained its position that it would not move forward with the case until the court case in the Philippines was finalised.

In July 2006, the TUAC Secretariat received a letter from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) informing it that Toyota Motor Philippines Corp. contested the facts as accounted above.

Since then the TMPCWA and its Support Group have met with Toyota every year outside the NCP forum at Toyota headquarters in Tokyo and Toyota City, but there has been no movement on the issues. NOT CLEAR TO ME - WITH THE NCP OR WITH TOYOTA

In October 2009, the complainants received word that the Japanese NCP was planning to re-start the initial assessment on the case. They sent a letter urging the NCP to start this assessment without further delay.

On 16 March 2010, the TMPCWA held a memorial protest to mark the nine years since Toyota illegal terminated the 233 members of the TMPCWA due to their winning the certification election.

In its Annual report to the OECD, the Japanese NCP reported that "[Regarding a specific case on industrial relations of a Philippines subsidiary of a Japanese company, initial assessment is being made and the Japanese NCP is in consultation with parties concerned. There is a parallel legal proceeding".

INVOLVEMENT OF THE ILO

On 22-29 September 2009, the ILO sent a high level Mission to the Philippines to investigate the alleged extra-judicial killings and use of the military against workers as well as the long-standing cases before the Committee on Freedom of Association, including the cases of the TMPCWA.

In November 2009, the Department of Labour and Employment (DOLE) initiated a meeting with the TMPCWA to discuss how to respond to the recommendations of the ILO High Level Mission.

On 12 April 2010, the DOLE wrote to the TMPCWA asking for information that would help the national Tripartite Industrial Peace Council-Monitoring Body to respond to the ILO recommendations. The TMPCWA submitted a list of the illegally dismissed members of the TMPCWA. The DOLE response to the ILO mission gave reason for optimism but the TMPCWA is concerned that Philippines Toyota is not playing a supportive role.

Organisations

Lead NCP Japan NCP : Interministerial Body 

Companies

Multinational Company Toyota Motor Corporation (Home country: Japan)

Complainants

Lead Complainant Toyota Motor Philippines Corp. Workers' Association : Company Union 

TUAC Analysis

Did the NCP publish its initial assessment? status-icon
Did the case involve parallel proceedings? status-icon
Was the existence of parallel proceedings an obstacle to the NCP accepting the case? status-icon
Was the businsess relationship other than that of a subsidiary? status-icon
Was the nature of the business relationship an obstacle to the NCP accepting the case? status-icon
Did the NCP inform other relevant government departments about its acceptance of this case? status-icon
Did the NCP offer mediation or conciliation? status-icon
Did the company accept the offer of mediation or conciliation? status-icon
Did the complainant(s) accept the offer of mediation or conciliation? status-icon
Was mediation or conciliation held? status-icon
Was mediation or conciliation conducted by a professional mediator? status-icon
Did the parties reach agreement? status-icon
If yes, did the NCP publish this agreement following the consent of the parties? status-icon
If mediation was refused or failed did the NCP make an assessment of whether the company had breached the Guidelines? status-icon
Did the NCP conduct in-host country fact finding? status-icon
Did the NCP make recommendations to the company on the future implementation of the Guidelines? status-icon
Did the NCP publish its final statement or report? status-icon
Did the NCP provide for follow-up of the agreement/recommendations? status-icon
Did the NCP inform other relevant government departments about its final statement or report? status-icon
Did the NCP inform public pension funds about its final statement or report? status-icon
Did the NCP apply any consequences in this case? status-icon
Did the NCP follow the indicative timescales set out in the procedural guidance? status-icon
Was there a positive outcome for the workers involved in this case? status-icon
Did the filing of the case under the Guidelines have a positive impact for the workers involved? status-icon
Did the lead NCP play a positive role? status-icon
If different, did the home NCP play a positive role? status-icon

Implications

Effective intervention by the ILO Freedom of Association Committee