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NGOs declare support for striking Securicor workers

Detik.com - June 16, 2006

Chazizah Gusnita, Jakarta – At lease six non-government organisations (NGOs) have declared their full support for 259 PT Securicor Indonesia employees who’s future’s are now uncertain. This support is necessary because the employees are confronting a large foreign owned company.

This was conveyed by the chairperson of the Securicor Indonesia Trade Union, Dedi F Toisutta, at Securicor’s central office on Jl. Raya Cilandak in Jakarta on Friday June 16. “We know that we are opposing a large and strong foreign company. Therefore we have requested the assistance of friends (NGOs)”, said Toisutta.

A number of organisations have declared their support for the workers including the Indonesian Legal Aid and Human Rights Association (PBHI), the Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI), Dirgantara Indonesia, the All Indonesia Trade Union (SPSI) and a number of other trade union federations.

For five days now, the 259 Securicor employees have been occupying the Securicor offices. They are demanding that they be reemployed after one year and two months of legal uncertainty.

The case began with an international merger between Group 4 Folck and PT Securicor in Britain on July 3, 2004. Although Securicor Indonesia did not take part in the merger, the management transferred the employees to Group 4 Folck.

This was in contravention of Law Number 13/2003 on Labour. According to regulations, if employees are transferred, they must first be dismissed and paid severance pay by the company. The company did not do this however and instead arbitrarily sacked the employees.

The employees have even undertaken legal action though the state courts, department of labour and the Supreme Court. On May 19, 2006, the Supreme Court ordered that the company must reemploy the workers or pay them severance pay.

To date however, Securicor has failed to comply with the order on the grounds that it cannot possibly reemploy the workers. Securicor has been working with other partners but because of a recent strike by its employees, a number of these decided not to work with the company any more because they were suffering financial losses.

The 259 employees plan to occupy the office for the next three weeks until there are new negotiations with the management in accordance with their demands. (umi)

[Translated by James Balowski.]

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