For immediate release
September 27, 2011
U.S. labor union representatives of more than 7,000 employees of the Deutsche Lufthansa AG subsidiary LSG Sky Chefs visited Germany in the final week of September to voice their concerns about the Lufthansa Group’s conduct in the United States.
The visit comes as two global labor federations and the primary U.S. labor federation have requested a review of the company’s operations by the U.S. National Contact Point for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
The International Union of Food, Agricultural, Hotel, Restaurant, Catering, Tobacco and Allied Workers’ Associations (IUF), and the U.S. labor federation, the AFL-CIO, filed a complaint against Lufthansa under the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, arguing that LSG Sky Chefs has put workers and the public at risk by failing to meet international standards for responsible business practices in its U.S. operations.
A report and new website to be released simultaneously in Germany by UNITE HERE, the union representing LSG Sky Chefs unionized workforce in the U.S., detail additional quality and safety concerns that have been raised by U.S. regulators and other key stakeholders about Lufthansa’s catering, passenger travel and aircraft maintenance divisions.
Thus far, these issues have resulted in a range of effects including global news coverage, worker protests, regulatory warning notices, and at least one fine for regulatory violation. The United States is Lufthansa Passenger Airline Group’s most popular passenger destination outside of Europe.
Deutsche Lufthansa is only the latest German company to face questions about corporate governance standards at its U.S. operations. An OECD Guidelines complaint against Deutsche Telecom and its T-Mobile USA subsidiary was filed in July 2011 by ver.di, the Communications Workers of America, and the UNI Global Union. A Hershey’s Chocolate Co. facility operated by Deutsche Post’s Exel North American Logistics subsidiary was the subject of an August 2011 petition to the U.S. State Department by a U.S. advocacy group called the National Guestworkers Alliance.