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Cartagena de Indias – Colombia. November 9, 2018.

The Arab multinational TAGHLEEF INDUSTRIES recently announced the acquisition of the company Biofilm S.A, producer of films of bioriented Polypropylene (BOPP for its acronym in English) with plants located in Cartagena - Colombia and Altamira - Mexico. 1

Within the framework of the announced connection, an anti-union and violent policy against workers affiliated to the union Sintrabiofilm (Base Union) and Sinaltrainal (Union of Industry) has been applied.


1. On October 29, 2 of the 5 calls for discharges of union leaders and activists were made. In the proceedings, the Head of Human Resources, Gloria Puello Espinosa, refused to include the words spoken by the workers, under the pretext of asking them to attach the sketch they had in their hands: leaves with scratches, tachones, notes to hand, logical schemes and other elements that they had built for their defense and that they had the right to incorporate into the minutes.
2. As if that were not enough, the company Biofilm S.A, (TODAY TAGLEEF INDUSTRIES) also refused to incorporate the arguments of the union representatives into the record of dismissals, as they were recorded the same day.
3. On November 6, 2018, the company decided to dismiss the two union executives ALFREDO PERNET AYOS AND GIOVANNI QUIROZ AMAYA, vice-president and member of Sintrabiofilm complaints and claims, having prevented them from defending themselves, declaring the dismissal with just cause.
4. Due process is a guarantee enshrined as a fundamental human right enjoyed by all persons, in accordance with article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, adopted by the UN on December 16, 1966, which was ratified by the Colombian government through Law 74 of 1968, subsequently strengthened and endorsed by Article 29 of the 1991 Constitution, as well as Article 8 of the American Convention entitled "Judicial Guarantees"
5. Such is the falsity and mounting of the accusations against the comrades who chose to illegally prevent their defense, creating just express causes to dismiss them.

Considering that labor rights are human rights and that human rights are inviolable imperatives of human civility, multinational companies can not remain small independent republics where the constitution does not apply and where workers are treated in the best style of the slave era, where expressing the thought and union position becomes a capital crime.

Recently, in judgment C 593 of 2014, the Constitutional Court analyzed in depth the scope of the disciplinary power of employers vis-à-vis their employees and reiterated their own jurisprudence when referring to Article 8 of the American Convention entitled "Judicial Guarantees":

"The Court has established that, although the aforementioned article does not specify minimum guarantees in matters that concern the determination of rights and obligations of a civil, labor, fiscal or any other nature, the minimum guarantees established in the numeral 2 of the same provision also apply to those orders and, therefore, in these the individual has the right to due process in the terms recognized for criminal matters, as applicable to the respective procedure. "2

The message sent by the multinational TAGHLEEF INDUSTRIES to the workers and to the whole world, is that come to Colombia to violate human rights!

In plenary session and in the hands of the outgoing administration of Biofilm SA, these illicit behaviors and policies are applied in the noses of the labor authorities that go to Washington - USA and Geneva - Switzerland, to say that in Colombia labor rights are respected .

But even more outrageous is knowing that the reasons for this crusade against the workers have no other cause than belonging to a union. And the whole world must know that in Colombia there is still a need to hide in order to create a union, and after its creation, it starts an endless list of aggressions against those who decide to exercise the human right of association and unionization.

The company Biofilm S.A., has a proven record of violations of labor rights, among which we can mention the following sanctions imposed by the Ministry of Labor in the last 5 years:

•317 of April 30, 2013, Penalty for violation of article 17 of Law 1429 of 2010, for $ 47,160,000.

•Resolution 338 of May 3, 2013, Sanction for Violation of Art. 26 of Law 361 of 1997 - Illegal Dismissal of Roberto Olivares for $ 47,160,000.

•Resolution 536 of July 24, 2013, Penalty for violation of resolution 652 and 1356 of 2012 - Case of exclusion of the President of the union to run as candidate for the coexistence committee, for $ 88,425,000.

•Resolution 357 of July 24, 2013, Penalty for violation of articles 186 and SS of the Labor Code by not granting vacations. $ 53,055,000.

•Resolution 535 of July 24, 2013, confirmed by resolution 772 of November 20, 2013 - Penalty for violation of Article 21 of Law 50 of 1990.

•Resolution 857 of December 27, 2013. Penalty for refusal to negotiate the list of petitions for 700 Legal Minimum Salaries $ 412,650,000.

•Resolution 148 of April 16, 2015, Penalty for Illegal Intermediation for $ 322,175,000.

•Resolution 385 of August 17, 2016. Sanction for violation of due process and right to defense for $ 220,625,280, confirmed in replacement by resolution 115 of March 10, 2017 and on appeal by Resolution 139 of February 20 of 2018.

•Resolution 796 of 2017 Violation of due process in disciplinary proceedings. Penalty for 320 SMLMV.

•Resolution 231 of May 10, 2017, for No discount of union dues, confirmed in replacement by Resolution 130 of February 16, 2018. Penalty for 100 SMLMV
As you can see, of the 10 sanctions imposed against the company BIOFILM S.A, 2 correspond to Violation of the right to defense and due process. This is the legacy that TAGHLEEF INDUSTRIES inherits and maintains with these new facts.

Colombian workers have seen the physical extermination of several generations of social and union leaders, threats, aggressions, persecution, stigmatization and discrimination are our daily bread.

Now, after the end of the armed conflict and "Peace" has been announced to the world, the war against the workers reaches its highest point.

On the one hand, the government announces a package of harmful reforms against the less favored classes: food taxes and tax exemptions for companies and, on the other hand, multinationals such as BIOFILM - TAGLEEF INDUSTRIES, slaughtering workers to smash unions.

Although by article 26 of the law 1453 of 2011, article 200 of the Penal Code was modified, hardening with jail sentences the violation of the right of association, this article is only a "siren song", since it does not apply, being the Office of the Public Prosecutor and the competent state entities, accomplices of the serious damages that violate the right of association of companies, such as the multinational BIOFILM – TAGHLEEF, to emails:

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This is the truth that the world must know!

We demand that the competent authorities intervene immediately to stop these attacks against the workers.

To the Ministry of Labor, so that it opens the respective investigation, to which we will subsequently attach all the evidence.

To the General Prosecutor of the Nation, so that it opens an immediate investigation into these acts against the right of union association because of the impact that these measures have on the union and against the right of association in the company BIOFILM - TAGHLEEF INDUSTRIES.

To the union organizations and defenders of human rights, their pronouncements before the directors of the company BIOFILM - TAGHLEEF INDUSTRIES.

We demand respect for the fundamental rights of workers in BIOFILM - TAGHLEEF Colombia!

Trade unionism is not a crime!

Stop the violation of human rights in the company BIOFILM S.A -TAGHLEEF INDUSTRIES Colombia!



PRESIDENT                                           SECRETARY


2. -biofilm-25870