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The Chairman of the DGB Demands Respect for T-Mobile Employees

At the Forum of the Deutsche Telekom's Works Councils on November 16, this year's guest speaker, the chair of the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) Reiner Hoffmann, addressed the situation at T-Mobile US.

He received a lot of applause for his comment that what is happening at T-Mobile US cannot be tolerated. The situation is absolutely clear, Hoffmann said: "We expect better!". In a globalized economy, the company is responsible for good working conditions and compliance with workers' rights of its employees not only in Germany, but also abroad.

He referred to the German autoparts supplier Kirchhoff to illustrate how this is possible: While the company had first pursued a union busting strategy similar to that at T-Mobile in its five US plants, when the German metalworkers' union IG Metall approached Kirchhoff's CEO Arndt Kirchhoff, he personally intervened - today, all plants have collective bargaining agreements with the UAW. This, Hoffmann said, should be a benchmark for DT.

Previously, the chairman of the DT group works council, Jupp Bednarski, had in his opening speech also demanded respect for T-Mobile employees and  CWA. Addressing the DT Management representatives, he said that it is not acceptable to proclaim CSR on the one hand and allow union busting in the US on the other.