Employees at Eram shoe stores all over the country stopped work on Saturday. They were protesting about the lack of progress in negotiating a social plan for around 70 of the French company’s 130 Belgian employees. Around 20 of the 28 stores closed during the strike.
Last October, Eram Belgium announced its intention to make 70 of its 130 employees redundant. It also wanted to close 13 stores. The first phase of the Renault procedure has already started.
At the beginning of December, when discussions about redundancy conditions for those having to leave were coming to an end, Unions again requested that the Eram France group (that controls Eram Belgium) officially commit to financing the social plan. When they refused, negotiations stopped, according to the Setca and CNE unions.
“The first problem is the restructuration plan and mass redundancy. The second is that there is no business plan to ensure a comeback. The third is that we cannot sign an agreement without a guarantee the Social plan will be financed”, says CNE representative Evelyne Zabus.
There will be another meeting between Eram bosses and the Unions on the 31st of January.
“We are asking for two things: that employees who are made redundant are treated fairly and the future of Eram Belgium is guaranteed”, says Pascal Strube, who is from Setca.