Extending solidarity rather than bargaining concessions: the IG Metall campaign for agency workers

Chiara Benassi

Research output: Other contribution

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Trade unions are expected to represent the interests of the entire workforce at both sectoral level and company level. Under threat of outsourcing, downsizing and increasing competitive pressure, workers’ representatives sometimes agree to concessions at workplace level at the expense of the peripheral workforce (e.g. fixed-term workers, agency workers) in order to protect the jobs and/or working conditions of the core workforce. Existing research has shown that this is not a sustainable bargaining strategy because the increasing presence of
‘second-class’ workers in workplaces also undermines, in the long run, the standards of the core workforce. Unions therefore need to take steps, through organising and bargaining activities, to include peripheral workers in their constituencies. In particular, unions are invited to set a common bargaining floor across companies and to engage actively with workplace representatives to prevent concessions from being agreed at the expense of the marginal workforce.
Original languageEnglish
TypePolicy brief
PublisherEuropean Trade Union Institute
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Publication series

NameETUI Policy Brief
PublisherEuropean Trade Union Institute

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