Friday, June 18, 2010

CSR or not at Deutsche Telekom

The CSRBot tweeted an intersting post (thanks, bot!) about Deutsche Telekom employees who are complaining that they are harrassed and intimidated with regard to forming a union inthe USA. The article says:

Workers at T-Mobile USA say the company is making a mockery of its parent’s claims of corporate responsibility. Earlier this week, Deutsche Telekom (DT), the giant German telecom company that owns T-Mobile, patted itself on the back for its “leadership” on environmental matters. But workers point out that corporate social responsibility extends beyond going green, it includes treating workers fairly. And on that score, DT and T-Mobile fail miserably. Workers say DT should “be green. not mean.”

The article  goes on to quote a report on Deutche Telekom's American Labour Practices in the workplace issued in 2009 that found that T-Mobile is conducting a vicious anti-union campaign to prevent workers from joining the Communications Workers of America (CWA). This is part of an ongoing campaign on the internet.

Deutche Telekom's labor relations practices are handled by local management in each country. I wonder where the Human Resources people are in T-Mobile Germany and what levels or responsibility they are demonstrating in relation to this issue and how strong their voice is. Freedom of association is one of the most basic labour rights and the HR function should be clearly on top of this one both as part of their professional performance and their social responsibility.

elaine cohen, CSR consultant, Sustainabilty Reporter, HR Professional. Contact me via  on Twitter or via my website

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