misunderstandings between this TNC and the union, which have been affecting the
internal relations at the plant, last Monday Coca Cola once again failed to
honor the Collective Agreement. Sirel discussed this situation with Gustavo
Sotelo, president of the Union of Coca Cola Workers of Uruguay (STCC).
-What is the situation now?
-Last Friday 16, the company informed that two seasonal workers of the
Distribution Area would become unemployed and the application process for the
unemployment benefit would begin
Then, the Union informed Coca Cola,
its disagreement with this job cutting because on 28th May
with the company a document to extend the season to cover the months of June and
The company replied that the issue would not be revisited because the decision
had already been taken. That is why every shift held a meeting and a one-day
nation-wide strike was called for Monday 19.
-What was the support for the strike?
-100 percent of workers went on strike at the bottling plant of Montevideo, and
also at warehouses and distribution centers in other parts of the country.
12-item set of demands emerged out of this industrial action, including: the
declaration of a pre-conflict status of STCC ;
calling the company Montevideo Refrescos to the Ministry of Labor due to the
breach of the Collective Agreement; complying with 8-hour-shifts, not working
overtime and call of an extraordinary Congress, which was held last Tuesday 20.
-What happened at the Congress?
-A workers' decision was passed to remain in permanent session, which means
that, within the production areas, breaks are unified and it represents a
Also, due to the serious situation, there was a decision to call the meeting at
the Ministry, which was held yesterday.
-Was there any agreement reached there?
-The Ministry made a proposal for an agreement to be reached: first the
reinstatement of the terminated workers for a 15-day period until the end of the
Second, a tripartite negotiation table and that no industrial action be taken by
the Union, and that the company should not decide any termination or lay-off
while this 30-day negotiation table is in session. Finally, that workers go back
to their regular work at the plant.
It is worth adding that management accepted the Ministry's proposal and
yesterday the general meeting of the union also agreed.