Workers for Chile's Escondida mine reject BHP proposal, threaten strike

The union said the company offered a bonus equivalent to about $3,100 per worker and to regularize an operating practice that was not included in the current collective agreement. BHP and the powerful union have clashed on several occasions.


Reuters | Updated: 25-11-2022 00:40 IST | Created: 25-11-2022 00:31 IST
Workers for Chile's Escondida mine reject BHP proposal, threaten strike
Representative Image Image Credit: Khusen Rustamov from Pixabay
  • Country:
  • Chile

Workers at Chile's Escondida mine, the largest copper deposit in the world, turned down an offer by BHP and could stop work on Nov. 28 and 30 if the company does not meet their demands, a union source told Reuters on Thursday.

BHP announced earlier this week that it reached a deal with the union to avert a work stoppage, but the agreement had to be ratified by its members. "The assemblies together with the board of directors decided to reject the company's proposal," the union said in a statement, adding that its members considered proposed security measures to be "insufficient" and wanted "concrete and verifiable" measures like joint inspections of work areas.

"In addition, immediate compliance with other measures due to legal violations will be insisted on," the statement said. "In the event that these requirements are not accepted, the Union will carry out the strike on Monday, November 28 and Wednesday, November 30, 2022." The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The union members presented a request for various hygiene and safety measures that include verification of environmental conditions in workplaces, availability of personal protection equipment and more. The union said the company offered a bonus equivalent to about $3,100 per worker and to regularize an operating practice that was not included in the current collective agreement.

BHP and the powerful union have clashed on several occasions. In 2017, workers staged a strike lasting more than 40 days in the middle of a contract negotiation.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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