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Strong mobilization of trade unions in Brazil against outsourcing

24 April, 2013IndustriALL affiliates are mobilizing against the adoption of a bill which advocates for a more flexible labour market against the rights of workers.

In recent years, more than 30 bills have been introduced to parliament on outsourcing which, so far, is not regulated in Brazil. The bill submitted by congressman Sandro Mabel, which benefits from the support of business representatives, is the most advanced in the parliamentary process in view of its approval by the Congress. If this text is adopted, it would worryingly weaken permanent and direct employment in Brazil by allowing outsourcing, including for jobs related to the permanent and normal activities of the user enterprise.

Mabel’s bill does not take into consideration the rights of workers and releases firms from their labour obligations, passing them to the outsourcing company. It does not include the obligation to inform the unions on the details of the service provision contract. Neither does it require the user undertaking to give contract workers access to the same services offered to its direct employees, such as a cafeteria or medical service.

While there is a need to regulate outsourcing in Brazil, instead of bringing solution to workers, Mabel’s bill will worsen their situation. Today outsourced workers are around 10 million in Brazil and they represent 25 per cent of the workforce in the formal sector. According to a study realized by the CUT, outsourced workers have a longer working day and they earn on average 27 per cent less then permanent workers. According to the same source, 8 out of 10 work accidents affect outsourced workers.

IndustriALL affiliates are mobilizing against the adoption of the legislation. Some unions, through members of parliament (MPs), have proposed amendments to the parliamentary committee examining the bill and Brazilian national centre the CUT (Central Unica dos Trabalhadores) called on its members to protest on 18 April against outsourcing.

In recent years, many demonstrations have been organized across the country. A forum for the defence of outsourced workers gathering various sectors of civil society (academics, NGOs) and unions was created in 2011 and organizes regular events and meetings to raise awareness among workers and society at large. The forum met again on 19 April to establish a campaign strategy against the adoption of Mabel’s text. IndustriALL affiliates plan to send letters to MPs on this issue and to meet with members of the parliamentary committee responsible for preparing the final draft of the bill which will then be debated in Congress before approval.

IndustriALL supports its members in the fight against outsourcing in Brazil and for the protection of the rights of workers and unions, and calls for the adoption of a bill in favour of workers.