WRC Factory Investigation

Jerzees Buena Vista

Factory: Jerzees Buena Vista

Key Buyers: Fruit of the Loom

Year: 2016

Case Summary

On November 14, 2009, Russell Athletic/Fruit of the Loom signed an agreement with the Central General de Trabajadores (CGT) of Honduras in order to resolve violations of university codes of conduct pertaining to the closure of a Russell/FOTL-owned factory known as Jerzees de Honduras. In this agreement, the company committed to respect workers’ freedom of association at all directly-owned Russell/FOTL plants in Honduras, including Jerzees Buena Vista. After workers organized a union at Jerzees Buena Vista in 2012, a collective bargaining agreement was signed between Jerzees Buena Vista (JBV) factory management and the union representing workers at the factory on October 25, 2013. The contract resulted in improved working conditions at the plant — including higher production bonuses, one free meal at lunchtime, and additional vacation days. In October 2015, Fruit of the Loom announced to workers that it would be closing Jerzees Buena Vista and consolidating its operation and workforce into a second facility owned by the company, Manufacturas Villanueva. The company negotiated with the union the terms of the consolidation and, in early 2016, workers at Jerzees Buena Vista terminated their employment with the factory and, if they so desired, were hired at Manufacturas Villanueva. Manufacturas Villanueva’s workforce is also represented by a union affiliated to the CGT and there is a signed collective bargaining agreement in effect at the factory.

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