Response of client A2 Maastricht

The Steering Committee was shocked by the allegations of abuses published at the end of 2013. It immediately took its responsibility for investigating the matter and set up a committee of experts. This committee found that no exploitation had taken place. Nevertheless, the committee urged the organization to take action to correct a number of matters.*)

The Steering Committee has repeatedly urged Avenue2 to take measures within the framework of its social responsibility. The court decision issued at the beginning of December 2013 led Avenue2 to believe that they also had the option of not paying back anything at all.**)

The Steering Committee is convinced that it has achieved the maximum result possible in the settlement reached, without ending up in a legal stalemate. In addition it must take into account the fact that, as the client, it has no contractual means of enforcing matters. A project-specific solution has now been devised for A2 Maastricht. New Collective Labour Agreement negotiations and the concern about unfair competition between Dutch and foreign employees must be addressed both within the Netherlands and internationally. All the social partners must accept their responsibility to jointly come up with a clear policy.

*) The findings of the committee of experts have been shared with the competent authorities, such as the Inspectorate SZW, Team Grote Bouwprojecten Nederland (large construction project team in the Netherlands), and the Technisch Bureau Bouwnijverheid (technical office for the construction industry, TBB).

**) In early December 2013, the Dutch court issued a decision in interim relief proceedings between the employment agency Rimec and the Technisch Bureau Bouwnijverheid (technical office for the construction industry, TBB), deciding in favour of Rimec and rendering the attachment that was set up by TBB no longer applicable. The TBB is a joint secretariat of employees and employers' organizations, and provides support during Collective Labour Agreement negotiations. Where necessary, the TBB checks that the Collective Labour Agreement is being complied with. The Bureau naleving & werkingssfeer (office for compliance and scope of application) has been set up to this end. In order to determine whether the Collective Labour Agreement for the construction industry applies in certain situations, they can carry out a scope of application investigation. In order to check whether the Collective Labour Agreement is being complied with, they can perform a compliance investigation.