Honduras: CATERPILLAR Distributor Fires 100 Workers

The ITUC has joined with its Honduran affiliates, the CUTH, CTH and CGT, in firmly condemning the union-crushing tactics being deployed by CEMCOL, which distributes heavy equipment produced by the Caterpillar brand in Honduras. The company’s conduct marks a break with 20 years of constructive relations between CEMCOL and the trade union SITRAMCA, based on respect for the law and dialogue.

The company has just unfairly dismissed 100 unionised workers. These dismissals violate the laws of Honduras, the international conventions of the ILO and the collective agreement. The 100 employees were sacked for refusing to be coerced into transferring to the same jobs in other companies set up by the same employer.

"Let no one be fooled," said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow. "The logic behind this strategy is to destroy the trade union organisation. It is something the trade union movement will not accept and that violates national and international laws."

In a letter to the Honduran authorities, the ITUC urged President Porfirio Lobo to intervene in defence of the workers’ fundamental rights and ILO conventions, to open talks with CEMCOL to ensure the immediate reinstatement of the employees dismissed. It is essential for democracy and social justice that every action be taken to stop the destruction of this union that has formed part of the company for so many years.