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Global unions renew agreement with Lafarge

21 May, 2013On 21 May 2013 IndustriALL, Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI) and Lafarge Group re-confirmed their global framework agreement GFA.

This new agreement promotes Lafarge’s commitment to international fundamental labour rights, recognizes the principles expressed in the UN Guiding Principles on business and human rights and upholds best practices regarding union rights and social dialogue.

The new redaction has a substantially improved language regarding respect by the company of the core International Labour Organization Conventions 87 and 98 on freedom of association and collective bargaining, settlement of disputes as well as application of the agreement across the company’s subsidiaries and supplier chain. A special group consisting of the representatives of signatories will meet at least once a year to follow up and review the implementation of the agreement.

The new Global Agreement also reinforces Lafarge actions in fields like health and safety or diversity thanks to new statements and a direct reference to the Group strategy with its “2020 Ambitions” on sustainable development.

The signing ceremony took place in the ILO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland in presence of the ILO Director General Guy Ryder. Bruno Lafont, Lafarge Chairman and CEO signed the agreement on behalf of the Lafarge Group, the signatories from the union side were Jyrki Raina, IndustriALL General Secretary and Ambet Yuson, BWI General Secretary.

BWI General Secretary Ambet Yuson states that "especially the commitments of Lafarge to apply agreed standards in its subcontractors and the commitment of the company and its subcontractors for direct employment are beyond those of its competitors and therefore standard setting for the cement industry”.

IndustriALL’s General Secretary, Jyrki Raina, states that for IndustriALL Global Union, "the provisions in the renewed agreement represent significant improvements for workers and trade unions, especially the provisions on freedom of association, subcontractors and the settlement of disputes. It is crucial to improve social dialogue between trade unions and management for the betterment of living and working conditions for cement workers across the world”.

Lafarge Chairman and CEO, Bruno Lafont  expressed his satisfaction regarding this new agreement: “This agreement highlights the constant and positive dialogue between the Group and the Global Union Federations. It illustrates  the coherence of our actions with our values in all our countries of operations”.

Lafarge is the world leader in building materials, holds top-ranking positions in all three of its activities:  Cement, Aggregates & Concrete. Lafarge employs 65,000 people in 64 countries.

The text of the press release is available on the link http://www.industriall-union.org/bwi-industriall-global-union-and-lafarge-sign-a-new-global-framework-agreement