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News ::
Workplace Abuses at Lufthansa (english)
18 Nov 2002
"Lufthansa Unbalanced" Web Site Exposes Conflict Between Socially Responsible Image and Treatment of U.S. Workforce, says Airline Catering Union, a Web site contrasting Lufthansa’s image of social responsibility with information about the treatment of its U.S. workforce, has been launched by the union representing the 10,000 U.S. employees of Lufthansa’s airline catering segment, LSG Sky Chefs.

The "Lufthansa Unbalanced" Web site illustrates the conflict between the image Lufthansa promotes as a corporation deeply committed to its 90,000 employees worldwide and to principles of sustainability, and evidence of Lufthansa’s mistreatment of its low-wage employees in the United States. The Web site reports incidents ranging from alleged sexual assault by managers, to employees working at home without pay, to management denying the rights of its employees to unionize. Lufthansa employs approximately 14,000 U.S. workers in both its airline catering and prepared foods processing divisions.

"This irresponsible behavior is not only incompatible with the socially responsible image Lufthansa promotes, but we believe it is also incompatible with Lufthansa’s inclusion in prominent Socially Responsible Investment indexes," stated Maya DeHart, a spokesman for the Union. "An index that establishes requirements for socially responsible behavior should not include a company that engages in workplace abuses in one of its largest markets."

"This is not just a moral issue. On purely economic grounds, Lufthansa’s socially abusive behavior in the United States is not sustainable. The Company’s treatment of its U.S. workers could impact the bottom line as workers become increasingly disgruntled and as Lufthansa’s behavior continues to fuel a labor conflict that could ultimately lead to strike."

The "Lufthansa Unbalanced" Web site is maintained by the Hotel Employees & Restaurant Employees International Union (HERE). HERE represents approximately 30 percent of Lufthansa’s LSG Sky Chefs workforce worldwide, and approximately 10 percent of the global workforce employed by the Lufthansa Group. As the employee representative and as a significant Lufthansa Group stakeholder, HERE wants to ensure that Lufthansa is held accountable for its corporate conduct.
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