The first bargaining agreement between the Uganda Hotels, Food, Tourism, Supermarkets, and Allied Workers Union and Majid Al Futtaim Group, the franchisee owner of Carrefour in Uganda, was successfully negotiated. This is a significant victory for workers’ rights in Uganda. Over 300 employees of the well-known grocery chain will now have much better working conditions thanks to this ground-breaking deal, which also secures important benefits.
The negotiation process was extensive and fruitful, resulting in several key provisions aimed at enhancing the lives of Carrefour workers in Uganda. Here are the highlights of this historic agreement:
1. Priority for New and Vacant Positions: One of the standout features of this agreement is that Carrefour workers in Uganda will now be given priority consideration for all new or vacant positions within the company based on their existing qualifications. This move not only promises better career prospects but also promotes internal growth within the organization.
2. Enhanced Leave Benefits: Employees will now receive Shs200,000 when they take the mandatory 21 days of annual leave. In addition, the agreement mandates 30 days of paid sick leave, ensuring that workers can address health concerns without financial worries.
3. Job Security: Employment contracts will guarantee job security and clearly outline aspects that warrant disciplinary action, including misconduct, breaches, and offenses. The agreement establishes a disciplinary committee composed of union representation to safeguard workers’ rights and ensure fair treatment in all disciplinary matters.
4. Health and Safety: Carrefour is now required to prioritize the health and safety of its workers. This includes providing suitable uniforms, protective gear, and insurance coverage against accidents, ensuring that employees can work in a safe and secure environment.
5. Maternity Benefits: One of the most significant achievements of this agreement is the provision for female employees to receive an additional 30 days of paid maternity leave, which can be extended upon a doctor’s recommendation. This is in addition to the existing 60 days of mandatory paid maternity leave. The agreement also mandates that shifts be designed in favor of pregnant and breastfeeding workers, further supporting their well-being.
6. Protection Against Harassment and Discrimination: The collective agreement has provisions to protect Carrefour workers in Uganda against sexual harassment and discrimination, reinforcing a safe and inclusive work environment.
Mr. Moses Mauku, the Uganda Hotels, Food, Tourism, Supermarkets, and Allied Workers Union general secretary, expressed his satisfaction with the agreement, emphasizing that it provides job security, fosters better working conditions, and ensures the protection of Carrefour workers in Uganda.
This historic agreement serves as a shining example of the positive impact that collective bargaining can have on the lives of workers. It not only secures essential benefits and improved working conditions but also sets a standard for fair and equitable employment practices within the Ugandan workforce.
As the first collective agreement between the union and Majid Al Futtaim Group, it marks a significant milestone and paves the way for further advancements in workers’ rights in the country.