Unions file OECD complaint against contact co. Teleperformance, following concerns of union busting & workers’ health and safety during pandemic
In April 2020, UNI Global Union and four French labor unions lodged a complaint under the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises against call centre giant Téléperformance.
The complaint detailed unsafe working conditions in Téléperformance’s call centres during the COVID-19 pandemic, and it also documented patterns of union busting and retaliation against workers. The complaints were recorded in ten countries, including Albania, Colombia, France, Greece and India.
Some of the most worrying allegations of abuse emerged from the Philippines, where workers were reportedly subjected to subhuman conditions, as they were forced to sleep at their workplace, often on the floor in cramped spaces and unable to respect COVID-19 distancing and safety measures.
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Téléperformance to respond to these allegations. The company did not respond.
In August 2021, the French National Contact Point (NCP) to the OECD issued recommendations for Téléperformance to better address workers' health and safety concerns, and to ensure the right of freedom of association of workers is respected throughout its global operations. These recommendations included strengthening due diligence processes, and engagement with stakeholders.
In addition to the concerns outlined in the OECD complaint, in August 2021 Téléperformance was accused by unions of allegedly monitoring and surveilling its employees working remotely in different European countries. The company denied breaching the privacy of its employees.