AB InBev workers continue strike over coronavirus infections in Jupille brewery
Monday, 07 September 2020
A strike at the Liège site of AB InBev that started after several cases of infection with the new coronavirus.
The brewery was shut down on Friday after staff stopped working. AB InBev’s other production sites in Belgium kept running as usual, a spokesperson told The Brussels Times on Friday.
The workers on sick leave are determined to continue the movement until their demands are met. They are calling for a tracing and the departure of the human resources director and the prevention adviser, General Labour Federation of Belgium (FGTB) senior delegate José Borego said on Monday.
On Sunday, the management had sent an external company, with a bailiff, to move the trailers that were blocking the entrances. The same approach was undertaken on Monday.
“There were a lot of people outside the brewery, including other delegates who came to support us and political representatives. I think that made them back off. The trailers are still in place, in any case, as well as the picket line, despite the many intimidating and pressurising text messages sent to the workers,” Borego pointed out.
The movement began late Thursday when there were nine cases of coronavirus in the logistics department. To date, the number of positive cases is ten, including a man in his fifties in serious condition. “For a second person, we have learned that his health is deteriorating,” the delegate said.
The FGTB, at the initiative of the movement, believes that the company was slow to react when the first cases were detected.
Last Thursday, the hundred or so people in the logistics department were tested.
“We are not yet aware of the test results. The management says that there are no positive cases but not all the results are known yet and that some of them are still to arrive tomorrow. The results that are already available are supposed to be distributed today in an envelope,” Borego said, adding that he has no feedback from management on the claims.