The interior of an H&M in the Netherlands. Copyright Twelve Photographic Services, H&M
Eight H&M stores in Belgium announced closures between November 2020 and the end of January 2021, and the union that represents private sector employees said workers will strike over insufficient negotiations regarding the job losses that will occur as a result.
“The proposed plan lacks a more restrictive procedure to save as many jobs as possible through internal reclassifications. At the pace of stores closing, it will no longer be possible to save a job when a store closes at H&M,” says the CNE, or National Central of Employees and Executives of the Private Sector (La Centrale nationale des Employés et des cadres du secteur privé).
The Belgian union says that H&M is closing its stores in a deliberate, “pearl” fashion so as to avoid having to create a more legally binding restructuring plan.