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13 January 2022
United States: historic union presence at Starbucks
On 09 December 2021 workers at a Starbucks coffee shop in Buffalo, New York State voted to form a trade union. The vote occurred a few weeks after the Workers United labour union was established at another of the US coffee chain’s locations in the same area. The federal NLRB (National Labor Relations...
3 January 2022
Spain: Heineken trials hybrid work model
Dutch brewing giant Heineken has been testing hybrid work arrangements in its Spanish offices, whereby employees can spread 16 hours of remote work across the week at their convenience. The hybrid work model has been designed after an initial trial with 77 employees and is now being tested on a large scale. If this second trial phase proves successful,...
3 January 2022
Italy: main motorway operator involves employees in strategic decisions and implements hybrid work
Autostrade per l’Italia (ASPI), the main company responsible for managing Italy’s motorway network, has taken a step towards co-determination, which is not very common in Italy, with the creation of a bilateral strategic development committee. The company has also signed a very innovative experimental agreement on hybrid work, including the right to disconnect and freedom as regards working hours.
13 December 2021
France: Matmut to prioritise female applicants to senior roles
French insurance group Matmut has renewed its agreement on workplace equality with the CFE-CGC, FO and CFTC trade unions, though not the CGT and CFDT. Renewed on 3 December 2021, the agreement will apply between 2022 and 2024 and covers the feminisation of professions, equal pay, skills development, parenthood and the fight against gender-based and sexual violence. The company has committed to increasing the female representation in management positions, devoting €850,000 to closing the wage gap and implementing...
8 December 2021
Italy: L’Oréal focuses on parenthood and work/life balance
Six weeks paternity leave, an increase in the company’s contribution to optional parental leave, and three days of paid leave per year available in the event of illness of a grandchild, elderly parent or dependent make up the main innovations of the L’Oréal company agreement that runs until 31 December 2023.
7 December 2021
France: insurance sector concludes a framework agreement on telework
On 06 December, four trade union bodies (CFDT, CFE-CGC, CFTC and UNSA) and the French Insurance Federation (FFA) signed the insurance sector’s first ever framework agreement on telework. Although not binding, the agreement is expected  to serve as a benchmark for company negotiations in a sector where teleworking is now becoming the norm. The text, that its signatories consider to be ‘not very innovative’ recognises the need both to support teleworkers in specific situations and to train managers.
hybrid work
7 December 2021
Italy: drivers contracted to deliver Amazon goods obtain a reduction in working hours
Strike action planned for Black Friday (26 November) was averted as a result of a national agreement being reached at the end of November between the companies affiliated with Assoespressi (employers’ body) that make deliveries for Amazon, and the relevant trade union bodies (Filt-Cgil, Fit-Cisl, and Uiltrasporti). The social partners agreed on setting out a concerted course of action addressing workloads and work scheduling. The drivers in question immediately obtained a two-hour reduction in their weekly...
Gig workers and the regulation of platforms
6 December 2021
Hong Kong: negotiations at Foodpanda (ultimately) successful
On 13 and 14 November, around 300 of the 10,000 people that work for Hong Kong’s leading food delivery platform, Foodpanda, went on strike. Following two rounds of agonising negotiations lasting more than 14 hours, the parties finally reached an agreement on around fifteen demands, including an improvement to the base fee for a single delivery, which marks a first in a sector that is rapidly expanding in Hong Kong amid the pandemic and resulting social distancing measures.
2 December 2021
Germany: election of a works council at the delivery company Gorillas, with help from the courts
Dissatisfied with the working conditions and pay offered by the young dynamic German start-up and ‘ultra-fast delivery’ platform, employees of Gorillas’ Berlin subsidiary finally succeeded in electing a works council on 27 November 2021. Throughout the process Gorillas management tried to block the election, and notably also in court. Management has also raised the possibility of changing the company’s operational structures.
Gig workers and the regulation of platforms
26 November 2021
France: Amazon France Logistique grants 22 days of leave to employees providing care and four additional weeks of paternity leave
At the end of September, 95% of the employees of Amazon France Logistique, a warehousing subsidiary of the e-commerce giant, approved a broad agreement covering both quality of life at work and gender equality in the workplace. A vote was required as the text was only signed by three trade unions out of five (CGT, CAT and CFE-CGC). Valid for the period 2021-2023, the agreement extends the legal caregiver leave for employees concerned and offers additional days of paternity leave. The subsidiary has also committed...
22 November 2021
Italy: energy group Eni extends remote working option as part of effort to foster parenthood
At the end of October, Italian oil and gas group Eni signed an agreement on so-called smart working. Set to enter into force at the end of the state of health emergency, currently set for 31 December 2021, the agreement includes the possibility of remote working for staff at industrial sites, different modes of application according to individuals’ family situation and state of health, as well as a codified right to disconnect.
19 November 2021
Colombia: first employers’ union in the country established
On 2 November the Colombian ministry of labour gave approval to the Sindicato de Empresarios por Colombia (Siempre Colombia) as a union organisation for employers, making it the first of its kind in Colombia. “This new union aims to present a model of social innovation that fosters the country’s development and features entrepreneurs from various sectors of micro, small, medium and large companies from different productive sectors of the country, with a modern and disruptive vision but that focuses on market...