Thomson employees 'occupy' factories: reports

Disturbances close factories; HR director taken hostage for 10 hours.
Workers at a peaceful demonstration against job cuts earlier this year.
Workers at a peaceful demonstration against job cuts earlier this year.

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Employees of Technicolour‘s Rennes-based facility occupied the company’s factories in Brest and Conflans holding the director of HR for more than 10 hours resulting in the temporary closure of both sites, according to reports in France.

“The site at Brest was closed this morning as was that of Conflans,” Jean-Pierre Ottavi, representative of the CFDT union. “One-hundred and twenty employees from Rennes came by bus to the site of Conflans,” Ottavi told the AFP news agency.

The company’s owner Technicolor (previously Thomson) announced plans to cut the GV workforce by 25 percent – a total of 625 jobs worldwide – in March of this year. The news was met with peaceful protests by staff, however the mood appears to have now soured with security staff present and tension increasing at the site last week.

“In total 250 workers stormed the site,” claimed Ottavi. “The management have hired 15 security guards to site,” said Ottavi who went on to say that he expected confrontation later that afternoon.

Meanwhile another CFDT representative, Yannick Villalon claimed that union was exploring the possibility of a legal challenge to the job cuts.

“There was no formal vote, the legal procedures have not been met. We will bring this dispute before the court,” said Villalon.

Thomson was contacted by DPME.com but had not yet responded at the time of press.

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