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Polish truckers win fair wages court victory

news 26 May 2016

The ruling on 24 May also means that Farm Trans – which delivers potatoes for Farm Frites – must comply with Dutch collective labour agreements if it outsources transportation to its Polish subsidiary. While the Dutch collective bargaining agreement (CBA) ensures wages of €13 per hour, Polish drivers employed by sub-contractors receive only around €3.

Under new legislation in the Netherlands, clients such as Farm Frites will soon be liable if their transport companies do not abide by the collective labour agreement.

Edwin Atema of the FNV said: “With this decision, the noose would appear to be drawing tightly around the last bandit in potato transport using social dumping as a business model.

“It means that foreign truck drivers are no longer exploited and Dutch drivers don't face unfair competition from companies who organise abuse.”

ITF inland transport secretary Mac Urata congratulated the FNV on this latest win in their determined struggle to win safe rates and end social dumping.

The FNV recently concluded discussions with AB Texel, the potato transport company working for Aviko, McCAIN and LWM, which resulted in the company agreeing to employ its Polish drivers under Dutch employment terms.

The FNV’s long campaign on safe rates in the transport industry continues, however. It is pursuing legal action against Koninklijke Rotra in Doesburg, which deploys Romanian truck drivers, and Heisterkamp Transport in Oldenzaal, which subcontracts truck drivers from Poland, Romania, Lithuania and Germany. Both companies pay the workers under terms of employment in their own countries rather than those in the Netherlands.

Watch this film to see how the FNV and Solidarność started their safe rates in potato transport campaign. 

Read more about the FNV’s campaign. 

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