Unilever V CUT Brazil

Overview

NCP Decision Accepted
Current Status Closed
Date Submitted 27/10/2003
Date Closed 01/06/2004
Case Duration 31 weeks and 1 days
Host Country Brazil  (Adhering Country)
Sector Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals 
Issue(s) Failure to consult or give information on plant closure
Provisions Cited IV.2-b  IV.6  IV.7   
Case Description In December 2003 the partial transfer of a plant owned by Unilever in Brazil was raised by the CUT with the Brazilian NCP. The decision to transfer part of the production line from Vinhedo (Sao Paulo) to Ipojuca (Pernambuco) was taken without any prior consultations with the Labour Union of Chemical Workers of Vinhedo. In fact, the workers learned about the details of the closure from the local newspapers. Furthermore, after the decision had been made public, the management threatened to move the whole factory if the trade union did not call off its activities.
Developments The National Committee of Unilever Unions first tried to establish a dialogue with the company on the Guidelines, but Unilever Brazil responded negatively. It was therefore decided to submit the case to the NCP. Since Unilever is headquartered in the Netherlands, the CUT requested the Brazilian NCP to co-operate with the Dutch NCP.
Outcome The issue was resolved in June 2004 when the company agreed to engage in negotiations with the union.

Organisations

Lead NCP Brazil NCP : Interministerial Body 
Supporting NCP Netherlands NCP : Independent Expert Body 

Companies

Multinational Company Unilever PLC (Home country: UK, Netherlands)

Complainants

Lead Complainant CUT Brazil - Central Única dos Trabalhadores : National Centre 
Supporting Home Country Trade Union National Committee of Unilever Unions : 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

NCP cooperation