Call center employees will have their first national union, which will be called 'Solidarity'. The representatives of the sector met yesterday and decided to found the union for an industry that boasts about 30.000 employees in Albania.
"Yesterday the workers held the union's founding assembly while today they handed over the documents of legal recognition." - reads a note from the union in social media profiles.
According to the note, call centers are expanding their thrust in the Albanian economy also considering that around 7% of the workforce is employed in Italian-language call centers. Companies that provide services in Italian - such as Teleperformance, IDS or Alba Call - are, not surprisingly, the main employers in the sector.
"We are the voice that listens to customers when they need technical assistance and now, with our union, we will have a voice in the organization of our work.
The establishment of our union is a historic step towards improving labor standards in our sector.
Our employers should immediately start negotiations to reach a collective agreement for the entire sector "- said one of the Teleperformance managers.
The latter, a French company that offers sub-supply services for international brands such as Apple, Amazon and Lottomatica, was fined last year by the Albanian authorities for problems with workers' social contributions.
Support from abroad
Workers' efforts in the call center sector to set up their first national union were also supported abroad, by the Italian trade unions SCL-CGIL and FISTeL-CISL and by the global union UNI, a trade union federation comprising 20 million workers of 150 countries of the world.
"The globalization of services should not imply global competition towards lower standards. The new union in Albania will be one of the domino effects in the organization of trade unions in Europe and beyond."- said Teresa Casertano, of the global UNI union.
"We can no longer think only of Italian call center workers and their working conditions, because we are facing a global industry.
The problems of workers in Albania and Italy are closely linked and the only way to deal with them is a multinational approach."- said Marco Del Cimmuto and Giorgio Serao, respectively representatives of SLC-CGIL and FISTel-CISL.
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