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Historic victory for CUT metalworkers in Brazil

23 April, 2014The CNM/CUT, an affiliate of IndustriALL Global Union, has signed a unique agreement on profit sharing with ThyssenKrupp Elevadores. The company will pay a profit sharing bonus to 2,000 members of 27 metalworkers’ unions affiliated to the CUT in nine states. This is the first such national company agreement to apply only to members of unions affiliated to the same Brazilian trade union central.

The Confederación Nacional de los Metalúrgicos (CNM), the metalworkers’ confederation affiliated to the CUT, has fought for the introduction of profit sharing plans since it was founded 22 years ago. The agreement will apply to 49% of Thyssen employees and will be valid for two years. The remaining 51% of the company’s employees are members of other trade union centrals.

Paulo Cayres, president of the CNM/CUT, said it was a major reason to celebrate: “Since the confederation was founded, we have fought for benefits for all workers and against regional variations. If workers are doing the same job, they should have the same rights”.

The agreement demonstrates the scope for improving the relations between labour and capital at company and sector levels and shows that a national agreement is both advantageous and possible.

Previously, only bank and oil industry workers had national collective agreements. The agreement shows the importance of making workers the main reference point in the world of work and of guaranteeing equal rights to all workers employed by the same company at all its units. The agreement strengthens the industry and promotes decent work.