The Regional Coordinating Body of Latin American Banana and Agro?industrial Product Unions (COLSIBA) is campaigning to end a culture where sexual harassment is commonplace and justified by some male banana and pineapple producers as ‘part of their culture’. In 2013, following a union campaign, the company Chiquita introduced the first sexual harassment policy in the Latin American banana sector as part of IUF/COLSIBA/Chiquita Regional Framework Agreement.
Text of the Joint Understanding on Sexual Harassment: Appendix to the IUF/COLSIBA/Chiquita framework agreement
“Chiquita operations will continue fostering a safe environment for women workers so that they can carry on their work in a safe space free from all forms of harassment, bullying or discrimination due to their condition or gender.
Chiquita, IUF and COLSIBA agree to work on developing a joint understanding on sexual harassment, so that this kind of harassment will not be tolerated in the workplace. This joint work includes the creation by mutual agreement of training strategies and sharing examples of good practice aimed at personnel, for the prevention of sexual harassment situations.
To that purpose, every workplace must take necessary measures to ensure men and women workers have access to information about their rights in the workplace. The measures must take into consideration the laws (and relevant particularities of each country where Chiquita operates). Laws usually constitute minimum and not maximum standards. Where the provisions of law and this agreement address the same subject, the standard that provides the best protection to workers should be applied.”
The agreement references the ILO Code of Practice on safety and health in agriculture as a source for language on prevention of sexual harassment that could be included in collective bargaining agreements. The appendix was negotiated in the gender sub-committee of the Framework’s Review Committee and agreed in 2013.
For further information: Chiquita: http://csrblog.chiquita.com/iuf-colsiba-agreement-with-chiquita-benefits-women-on-banana-plantations/
and IUF: http://www.iuf.org/cgi-bin/dbman/db.cgi?db=default&ww=1&uid=default&ID=111&view_records=1&en=1