Nearly 40 representatives of UPM’s salaried employees have written an open letter to the company’s management to voice their disappointment that their employer has let them down. In this letter, the employees’ representatives express their concerns about UPM’s announcement to scrap collective bargaining in their company. This announcement comes despite earlier assurances from UPM, (made after the withdrawal of the national forest industries from sectoral collective bargaining) that the company was still willing to negotiate collectively the terms and conditions for salaried employees in company-wide negotiations.

UPM announced on 8 February 2021 that it would abandon collective bargaining with its salaried employees. In practice, this means that UPM would, in the future, unilaterally dictate pay rises, sick pay, maternity and paternity leaves, as well as holiday bonuses.

“We think that we have been downright deluded by the employer. If this goes on, it will lead to distrust and hamper work motivation and well-being, to nobody’s benefit”, the salaried employees write.

In their open letter, the employees’ representatives challenge UPM’s full compliance with their international obligations concerning fundamental rights at work.

Isabelle Barthès, industriAll Europe Deputy General Secretary:

“The announcement by UPM to scrap bargaining at company level comes straight after the national forest industries' withdrawal from sectoral bargaining and this development is very worrying. UPM’s employees rightly feel let down and we stand by them in their protest. It is also a serious setback for collective agreements and for a social model that has served Finland well. The international trade union community is alarmed.”

Press information by Finnish trade union Pro (published on their website)

Open letter of UPM's shop stewards

Contact: Andrea Husen-Bradley (press and communication), Erlend Hansen (policy adviser)