After a long and difficult negotiation that lasted more than 14 months, the
Union of Workers of Embotelladora Central SA (STECSA)
secured an important new collective bargaining agreement with Coca-Cola FEMSA,
guaranteeing protection for rights achieved in the past.
suspension of negotiations last February 21, the parties returned to the
negotiating table to seek an agreement on the clauses that were still pending
After three meetings,
on March 26, right before the semester meeting between the IUF and the
Coca-Cola Company in Atlanta, STECSA and Coca-Cola FEMSA
finally came to a solution and signed a collective bargaining agreement for two
periods, covering from March 1, 2011 to February 28, 2013, and March 1, 2013 to
February 28, 2015, respectively.
“With the signing of
this agreement we succeeded in ratifying the gains we had in our previous
collective bargaining agreement, but above all we achieved our chief goal, which
was to defend the rights earned over many years of struggle,” STECSA
general secretary Carlos Luch told
The union leader
explained that with the signing of the new agreement the workers successfully
rejected the company’s plan to implement a presales and dynamic routing model.
According to Luch, this model has not only proven ineffective in
Guatemala, it would have jeopardized the very survival of the union.
“We have been
mobilizing non-stop to defend our constitutional right to collective bargaining,
and all the protests we held were coordinated nationally and internationally
with the Trade Union Federation of Food, Agroindustry and Related Industry
Workers of Guatemala (FESTRAS), the Latin American Federation of
Coca-Cola Workers (FELATRAC) and Rel-UITA (IUF Latin America),
which, through you, published several reports chronicling our actions.
to express its profound gratitude for the support we received from all of them,
because this ongoing contact with sister organizations and their unconditional
support gave us great strength and was instrumental in the achievement of our
goal,” Luch said.
In terms of wages, the
parties agreed on 5 to 6 percent raises applied as of March 1, 2011
(retroactive), and until February 28, 2015.
“Although the salary
adjustment is less than we expected, we’re satisfied with the overall outcome of
“Also, with the signing
of an agreement for two periods we are guaranteed great stability,” the general
secretary of STECSA concluded.