Fresenius Healthcare Workers Unionize in Colombia
Employees of the Clínica Prado in Medellín joined Sintrasass on Tuesday in what many consider a historic breakthrough in a country where union campaigns are often met with resistance from employers. Sintrasass already represents workers at Clínica Las Vegas and Clínica Medellín. The three clinics are all part of German multinational Fresenius.
"We made the decision to join Sintrasass because of the poor working conditions we have been suffering from for years. Low wages, harassment at work and fair pay for overtime and night-time are just one example of these problems," said one of the union members.
For months, workers have been informing their colleagues of the need to create a union to improve working conditions by sharing leaflets and initiating contacts in the workplace but workers report that the company´s management has been holding anti-union meetings to try to stop the effort.
"This new union is proof that workers in Colombia and throughout the Americas are demanding the right to have a voice at work and will not stop until they get a decent job. It is time for Fresenius to act responsibly and accept this decision without putting pressure on the workers," said Alke Boessiger, Deputy General Secretary of UNI Global Union.