Jack Wolfskin, Complaint 417

Employment is freely chosen Safe and healthy working conditions Legally binding employment relationship

The complaint related to several issues in relation to the labour standard ‘Freedom of
Association and the right to Collective Bargaining’ that is part of FWF´s Code of Labour
Practices: The plaintiff stated that seven members of SBGTS (three worker representatives and
four rank and file workers) were suspended and dismissed by BPG management on
unfair grounds. This would have happened after the seven workers would have left their
work stations to file a complaint at the Bogor district department of the Manpower
Ministry (the governmental bureau concerned with labour relations and conditions).
Management of BPG would have discriminated SBGTS members since 2003, among
others by only accepting the union verbally but not in written and by denying them official
facilities and access to meetings with the management.
Cited from a report that was submitted by SBGTS (received 1 April 2011) additional
violations of labour standards would have occurred at BPG prior to filing the complaint to
the manpower department of Bogor district:
Payment of temporary workers below the local legal minimum wage;
Discrimination against workers with a temporary contract regarding transportation fees,
fringe benefits and leave;
Deliberate actions by management to terminate contracts of permanent workers and to
recruit temporary workers instead;
No payment of the legally required premium for overtime work;
Verbal abuse by production supervisors;
Unreasonable pressure on workers to discourage them to take leave;
Insufficient provision of personal protective equipment.

Findings and conclusions

In April 2011, FWF received a complaint through the Indonesian trade union SBGTS. The complaint touched on a number of labour standards, including freedom of association. Members of SBGTS were dismissed by management in relation to their activities as members of the trade union. An investigation showed that the complaints were grounded. FWF member Jack Wolfskin was aware of the problems and had been working on remediation for quite some time. Seeking cooperation with other buyers from the factory, Jack Wolfksin will make one more attempt at improving the situation. Should this attempt fail, then FWF will expect Jack Wolfskin to implement a responsible exit strategy.

Update January 2012: when an audit in November showed that the factory was not (sufficiently) addressing the non-compliances, Jack Wolfskin required the factory to start implementation of the Corrective Action Plan immediately and report on progress on a monthly basis. Failure to comply will have consequences for JW’s business relationship with the factory.

Update July 2013: In spite of repeated efforts to convince the supplier to realise improvements, Jack Wolfskin decided to phase out production at the facility. The report describes how the company rolled out a responsible exit strategy and how compensation was arranged for the dismissed workers.

Overview of the complaint investigation

2013-07-22 Closed

This complaint is closed