Dominican Republic   | TRADE UNIONS


With Linares Díaz Cabral

SATRABECO trains for upcoming negotiation with Coca-Cola



As negotiations for the new collective bargaining agreement are set to begin, the members of the negotiating committee of the Autonomous Union of BEPENSA - Coca-Cola Workers (SATRABECO) participated in a Collective Bargaining Workshop organized by Bernabel Matos. SIREL spoke with the union’s general secretary, Linares Díaz, to learn more about this workshop.


-What did the training involve?

-The workshop was aimed at teaching us how to use negotiation tools and techniques, as well as at working out the details of a strategy for the upcoming collective bargaining process with BEPENSA DOMINICANA S.A.


The activity greatly enhanced our knowledge and helped us prepare properly to face this new challenge, which will be crucial to defend the rights of the workers.


The workshop facilitator was Bernabel Matos and participants included all the members of the negotiating committee, alternates, and other union leaders.


-How important is this activity for you?

-Ours is a relatively new union, so for us it’s very important to train our leaders and to prepare everyone who will be involved in the negotiations for our third collective bargaining agreement.


We thank Rel-UITA (IUF Latin America), the Latin American Federation of Coca-Cola Workers (FELATRAC) and Bernabel Matos for their support, because it was through their support that we obtained the instruments and guidance and developed the skills necessary to grow stronger and stronger every day.


-What are the most important clauses that you included in your list of demands?

-We’re focusing on protecting our job stability, in securing a guarantee from the company that it won’t implement outsourced work schemes, and in obtaining better wage, especially in the sales area. Workers in the sales area have to put in very long hours - up to 16 or 18 hours - practically covering two whole shifts, but their wages are always the same.


-Are there many outsourced workers in the company?

-The company does not employ outsourced personnel, but it almost implemented an outsourcing scheme to cover vacancies.


We had to mobilize because it was an attempt by the company to evade the guarantees that we have obtained through collective bargaining. Which is why in the new list of demands we included a clause that prohibits the company from outsourcing work.


BEPENSA’s competition has currently outsourced 30 percent of its posts. Which is why we wanted to get ahead of management and introduce this clause, and we hope the IUF will back us in this demand.


-How many workers have joined SATRABECO?

-Of a total of 2,200 workers at BEPENSA, 1,750 are unionized, and 1,100 of those unionized workers are members of SATRABECO.


-Last question, FELATRAC is preparing a major event in the Dominican Republic. What do you think of that?

-We know through  Bernabel that our Federation is deciding on a date to hold an important seminar with us. We’ve also been assured that Raúl Álvarez and Pablo Quiroga, FELATRAC president and general secretary, respectively, and our regional secretary, Gerardo Iglesias, will be coming soon to our country, and we are very excited over that.




From Managua, Giorgio Trucchi


july 9, 2012





Photo: Bernabel Matos


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