Interference with striking workers in Brazil
Lead NCPBrazil
Supporting NCP(s)None Selected
DescriptionSpecific instance notified by multiple trade unions regarding the activities of Ita├║ Unibanco in Brazil.
Theme(s)Employment and industrial relations, General policies
Date22 Sep 2009
Host country(ies)Brazil
SourceTrade Union
Industry sectorFinancial and insurance activities

Read the final statement issued by the Brazilian NCP concluding the specific instance - 30 March 2015

In September 2009, the Brazilian NCP received a request for review by the trade unions:

  • Bank Workers Union of São Paulo, Osasco and Region;
  • National Confederation of Financial Sector Workers (CONTRAF);
  • Unified Workers' Central (CUT); and
  • Credit Workers’ Federation (FETEC)

The trade unions alleged that Itaú-Unibanco had breached the employment and industrial relations provisions of the Guidelines in Brazil by interfering with the strike actions of workers.

The NCP accepted the specific instance for further consideration and requested more information from the parties. Itaú-Unibanco responded stating that it recognised the right to strike and that the document that had been at the origin of the trade unions' request did not constitute an anti-union practice, rather that its intention was to ensure the right to work of the employees that did not join the strike. The trade unions responded in turn that the bank had theatened the strikers and that there had been alleged attempts to force workers to attend the workplace which had resulted in harsh police action and the arrest of a trade unionist.

The NCP proposed a series of mediation meetings to help the parties come to an agreement. Despite four meetings, the parties could not reach an agreement on an understanding of anti-union practices.

Unable to help the parties find a solution, the NCP, in March 2015, concluded this specific instance and issued a final statement. The NCP further recommended that the parties proceed in dialogue on the topics in question and that Itaú-Unibanco seeks, in practices related to situations of strike, to go beyond their legal rights and obligations. The NCP believed that such actions would be in the interest of the development of more positive labour relations, in particular in line with the letter and the spirit of the Guidelines.