Indonesia: 4 years after instant closure, workers still fighting for their rights at Great Giant Pineapple
In May 2016, the agrofood conglomerate Gunung Sewu Group announced the immediate closure of its tapioca-based starch factory in Lampung, Indonesia, with no prior notice and without any negotiations with the union, SBMUJA. Four years on, Gunung Sewu still refuses to negotiate with the union to remedy these violations of fundamental rights: the withdrawal of union recognition and the workers' right to freedom of association which accompanied the overnight closure.
Umas Jaya Agrotama is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Gunung Sewu Group's Great Giant Pineapple. Great Giant Pineapple is one of the world's largest pineapple producers, whose canned products are exported worldwide. Despite its international reputation and its claim to be working for "individual and collective empowerment" ("That's why we still have employees who have been with us for 20 and 30 years"), Gunung Sewu Group ruined the lives of hundreds of families in a rural community in Lampung when it ordered the immediate closure of the factory. The casual workers on precarious contracts exploited for years were abruptly terminated and tossed on the scrapheap.
Gunung Sewu Group has perpetuated these rights violations for the past four years by refusing to engage in good faith negotiations with SBMUJA.
With the support of the IUF, SBMUJA continues to fight for their rights. CLICK HERE to send a message to top management of the parent company insisting that it remedy these violations of fundamental rights by entering into good faith negotiations with the union.
Workers continue to protest at Gunung Sewu Group's offices in Jakarta, denouncing the unfair mass termination and closure of the Umas Jaya Agrotama factory in 2016 and demanding negotiations with the union.