DHL Turkey: Global support for sacked workers
22 August 2012
DHL Turkey picket line visits show global support for sacked workers
Workers sacked by DHL Turkey who believe the dismissals were linked to their trying to organise a union will see further evidence of worldwide support for their plight when representatives of two global unions visit their picket lines this week.
Alen Clifford, organising globally assistant coordinator at the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF), and Cornelia Broos, policy officer for post & logistics at UNI Europa, are visiting the picket lines in and around Istanbul on Thursday 23 and Friday 24 August to meet the sacked workers and their union, Tumtis (the Turkey Motor Vehicle and Transport Workers’ Union).
The picket lines are at: DHL Lojistik Hizmetleri Depoları, Ahmet Yesevi Cd. Güzeller Sanayi Sitesi, Gebze/ISTANBUL and at DHL Lojistik, Hizmetleri Kıraç Merkez Depo, Akçaburgaz Mh. 163. Sk., No: 1/1 Kıraç- Esenyurt /ISTANBUL. Tumtis will be holding a press conference at Gebze picket line at 12:30 on Friday 24 August.
As well as showing solidarity for the workers, the ITF and UNI representatives will be discussing next steps in the global campaign to get the workers reinstated.
Alen Clifford said: “We want the dismissed workers to know that the global union family strongly backs their calls for reinstatement. DHL Turkey cannot be allowed to victimise union members. Our visit will allow us to hear the workers’ stories first hand and to use this material in our ongoing campaign.”
Alan Tate, campaigns director at UNI global union, commented: “DHL is a signatory of the United Nations Global Compact and must act accordingly wherever it operates. It cannot allow one part of its operation to flagrantly flout its own corporate responsibility practices. We will keep up the pressure on the company and on the Turkish government, which is a signatory to international conventions on workers’ rights to join and organise unions freely.”
DHL Turkey has sacked 24 warehouse operators since December 2011, on grounds of alleged underperformance. However, the sackings coincided with an organising drive by Tumtis. And Tumtis reports of ongoing threats to workers by human resources and operations managers that unless they resign from the union there would be unpleasant results for them appear to reveal an anti-union campaign by the company. This is in direct contravention of DHL’s own corporate responsibility policies, in which the company pledges to respect workers’ rights to organise and not allow any management interference.
For more about the campaign of support for Tumtis and the sacked workers please see www.respectatDHLturkey.org