CNE (Workers’ Union), SETCa (Union for Professionals and Managerial Staff), and CGSLB (Liberal Trade Union) registered their concern upon discovering BNP Paribas Fortis’s new strategic plan, they revealed on Thursday. In particular, the unions are opposed to lay-offs at the bank. “We are stunned. At the end of the day, 590 people will lose their jobs. Management mention severance schemes, but what exactly are they referring to,” wonders Giacomo Modofarri, spokesperson for the CNE delegation.
Within the bank as a whole, almost 2,500 people will change jobs, unions were told at the latest BNP Paribas Fortis board meeting devoted to the plan called “One step beyond, 2020”. “Management intend to find new jobs for most of them within the company. But they also confirm that for 600 people, finding an appropriate post would be difficult. Early retirements will be encouraged. For those affected the solutions evoked remain very elusive – far too elusive: managers speak of a ‘socially acceptable answer’. Which one exactly?” wonders CGSLB in a press release.
“Some tasks will be outsourced, and how? We also worry about compulsory redundancies,” adds the CNE delegate, reminding everyone that guarantees of employment are part of a collective labour agreement which ends in 2016. “We have not been promised that no-one would be made redundant. As it happens we have used the early retirement process as much as is realistically feasible,” adds Jean-Michel Cappoen, Secretary General of SETCa. “This is not an investment plan as announced by the bank’s management, but a cost saving plan!”
CGSLB representatives opposed the project as they left the meeting. The other two unions followed suit after consulting with their leadership.