Workers win in Hyundai case ruling

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Workers win in Hyundai case ruling

Nearly 1,000 temporary employees of Hyundai Motor’s manufacturing lines earned permanent positions yesterday when the Seoul Central District Court ruled partially in favor of the in-house subcontract workers who filed a lawsuit against Hyundai Motor and their subcontractors.

The lawsuit, which was the biggest pending case against the country’s largest automaker, is likely to set a precedent for a ruling involving 285 more temporary Hyundai workers that is set to be issued today.

“Although these employees work for in-house subcontract companies, they have been working for Hyundai for more than two years. We see them as employees hired by Hyundai,” the court said in its ruling.

The court also ordered Hyundai to pay 21.4 billion won ($20.5 million) in unpaid wages to the 994 workers who had originally asked that Hyundai pay them 54.7 billion won.

The temporary employees have been working alongside regular Hyundai workers at its Ulsan plant. But the annual income of contracted workers last year was about 57 million won, compared to 94 million won for Hyundai employees.

The legal battle between the nearly 1,000 laborers and Hyundai Motor took almost four years to conclude.

Responding to the court’s ruling, Hyundai Motor said it would hire more of its subcontracted workers.

“We already agreed on special in-house subcontract employment with the labor union in August and we’ll hire 4,000 [temporary] employees by 2015,” the carmaker said in a press release.

Similar lawsuits have been filed by temporary workers at SK Broadband and LG U+ who want to convert their status.

BY sung SO-YOUNG [so@joongang.co.kr]
















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