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Employees protest TI layoffs in France

Posted: 06 Feb 2009     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:layoffs  R&D  TI France 

TI insisted that its Villeneuve-Loubet site will remain a key R&D business centre for its digital and wireless systems solutions, including OMAP and custom digital base band products. The company said it does not anticipate additional job reductions at TI France in organisations impacted by the current reorganisation project.

TI has offered compensation to fired employees, but many of them remain bitter despite the discussions with French agencies. "Compared to the recent layoffs at HP, Atmel and STMicroelectronics (in France), the proposed indemnities are really peanuts and TI France employees are quite furious and have lost their motivation," according to one TI engineer at the site.

Not enough
"Furthermore, 90 per cent of TI France employees, including managers, have decided to go on strike and to repeat the current actions until they get a decent proposal from the management," the source said.

"Some 'pseudo-negotiations' have already started between the two parties, but unfortunately, TI management hasn't done (enough) and the proposed indemnities are perceived by the employees as a strong lack of respect," according to the source.

What you may be seeing is U.S. capitalism crashing into European left-of-centre social democracy, an analyst said. French labour laws are stringent and provide job security. It is difficult for employers to fire workers. Employers must negotiate for weeks to implement layoffs.

It is much easier to implement layoffs in the United States, where U.S. companies can skirt around the laws.

For example, IBM Corp. has cut more workers, including within its chip, research and other units. The job cuts, which have been anticipated for weeks, are causing anger and friction inside the computer giant.

The company has confirmed the layoffs in various reports, but it has been mum about the size and the extent of the cutbacks. The computer giant has been able to skirt the issue, because the layoffs fall short of 500 in a specific division, as defined by the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, or WARN Act.

- Mark LaPedus
EE Times

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