European trade unions call on logistics giant XPO to reinstate US colleagues fired for union activity

19 Mar 2018

Global logistics giant XPO is under global pressure for what appears to be illegal union-busting activity in the USA. Jose Ramirez and Ryan Janota, both drivers for XPO in Illinois, were recently fired for exercising their federally-protected right to organise. Now unionists from 8 European countries have signed a declaration calling for XPO to reinstate their colleagues in the USA.

The European trade unions were meeting in Paris to share information and plan a joint response to XPO’s aggressive growth strategies. As it buys up competitors in both Europe and the USA, XPO has been accused of intimidating employees and ignoring workers’ rights. The CEO, Bradley Jacobs, has given himself an almost 500 percent pay rise in two years, while refusing to pay staff a basic living wage.

Such disdain for workers was already encouraging unions to work together, and bringing criticism from union leaders. This latest news from Illinois underlines the need for European and global solidarity when faced with a company willing to violate workers’ rights in the name of profits and international growth.

Full text of declaration:

We the undersigned, demand that XPO immediately reinstate our U.S. colleagues Ryan Janota and Jose Ramirez to their jobs in Aurora, IL, being made whole in every way and suffering no losses from their unfair and unjust terminations by XPO management on February 21, 2018

We, again want to make it very clear to XPO, its board of directors and CEO Bradley Jacobs that “we stand as one united union family and we will not be divided.” It matters not, which country we work in.   We will not tolerate any injustice to our brothers and sisters, our XPO colleagues.

By all accounts, XPO has chosen to break the law in the United States in Aurora, IL and other locations and has further refused to bargain with these union men and women to secure a collective bargaining agreement.  XPO has refused numerous times to comply with the U.S. laws and stands in defiance to the U.S. National Labor Relations Board.  XPO stands in the way of these employees right to Freedom of Association. Such actions threaten us all and are unacceptable. 

Many of us had the chance to meet with Ryan Janota at a recent conference in the UK.  We consider him a brother and adamantly protest XPO’s brazen attempt to intimidate from exercising his rights. 

The notice of the terminations of these two men came as a great shock to us all.  We stand together in insisting that XPO immediately reinstate our brothers.

The 11 signatories came from:

  • Belgium (ACV Transcom)
  • France (CFDT, CGT, FO-UNCP)
  • Italy (CISL FIT)
  • Luxembourg
  • Netherlands
  • Romania
  • Poland
  • UK (Unite)