Building and Wood Worker’s International & LafargeHolcim
Lead NCPSwitzerland
Supporting NCP(s)
DescriptionSpecific instance submitted by Building and Wood Worker’s International, a trade union, concerning the alleged non-observance of the Guidelines by LafargeHolcim
Theme(s)Employment and industrial relations
Date12 Dec 2019
Host country(ies)Philippines
SourceTrade Union
Industry sectorManufacturing

Read the initial assessment issued by the Swiss NCP on 26 May 2020: English

Read the final statement issued by the Swiss NCP on 11 May 2021: English

On 12 December 2019, Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI), a global federation of trade unions in the building sector, submitted a specific instance to the Swiss NCP, alleging that LafargeHolcim (LH), a French-Swiss multinational manufacturer of building materials, did not observe the Employment and Industrial Relations (Chapter V) provisions of the Guidelines.

The instance relates to a cement plant, held by a member of the LH group, in the Philippines. Specifically, the submitter alleges that the plant violated the Guidelines by failing to respect applicable laws in their utilization of subcontractors,’ failing to recognize workers as members of trade unions, not providing the best possible wages and work conditions, and not ensuring occupational health and safety. Similar instances from LH were noted by the submitting party in India and El Salvador.

On 26 May 2020, the Swiss NCP issued an initial assessment accepting the case. Both parties accepted mediation which took place between 1 July 2020 and 17 March 2021. Parallel proceedings involving employees dismissed from the plant took place in a local court.

On 11 May 2021, the Swiss NCP issued a final statement concluding the instance without agreement, but noting positive outcomes, such as trust building, within the mediation process. The NCP issued recommendations, notably that the parties establish a social dialogue on a group level and that LH continues to follow-up the situation in the Philippines.

A follow-up is scheduled six months after publication of the final statement.