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Translated script that Nyhamna Gas Plant Manager read from at staff canteen meeting filmed by Shell

Everyone present was well aware that the person referred to variously as “someone”, “an employee”, “HVO”,  “safety delegate”, and “Main Safety Delegate”, but never actually named, was the elected Main Safety Delegate, Runar Kjoersvik. He was also present for his cringe-making humiliation in front of around 150 co-workers called to the meeting by Shell. The reference to “Terminate” was a reference to him. Again, everyone assembled for the surely unprecedented event with some resemblance to a show trial knew this. 

TRANSLATION (non-professional)

Facts survey related to the work environment, and collaboration between safety division/Union and Shell management.

In autumn 2014, it was expressed from someone in the safety division that he was subjected to harassment.

An employee of the SAFE Central Union prepared a concerned report on the conditions at Aukra.

This report includes in the strongest terms the concern for major cooperation problems and a lack of leadership culture at the plant related to the alleged harassment.

Shell HR engages psychologist Jørn Unneland and lawyer Harald Pedersen to carry out a facts survey. Over a long period they carried out many interviews of employees.

An Interim report from Pedersen/Unneland was provided in December 2014, and the final report from Pedersen/Unneland on February 24th 2015. The reports were immediately shared with SAFE and HVO.

Both report’s reach the same conclusions;

The survey has revealed that both SAFE and The Safety division blends (mix up) the employer’s right to manage along with issues related to the working environment, which may explain why they react to how management is practised at Nyhamna, and file a complaint of perceived harassment.

Misunderstanding role seems clear in matters related to the perceived lack of involvement in the reorganisation process, and SAFE`s preparation of its own report.

The behaviour of SAFE union in doing this report is blameworthy and gone far beyond its role and thereby contributed greatly to unclear roles and poor cooperation between safety division/Union and management.

It gave promises of anonymity, and those who are criticised cannot defend themselves. One such method involved the addition of a large burden for the leaders who are accused, according to Unneland/Pedersen’s report.

When it comes to a desired reallocation of a safety delegate in a case, it is said in the report that “management’s desire to re-prioritise so that in a period they could better benefit the safety delegate`s working is fair and legitimate, but it is not understood why the Main Safety delegate opposed this so strongly. There’s been no indication that the management has gone beyond the their corporate governance right (managerial prerogative) frames in this question related to reallocation so they could use safety delegate labour better.

It also states that representatives’ role in reorganisation and safety work is to contribute to discuss, cooperate, while the company makes decisions by their corporate governance right.

Regarding claims of a climate of fear the report says; “There has been NO information either in the written documents submitted in the case, or through interview`s that there is a climate of fear at Nyhmna.!

It is further said that is has been confirmed that the conflict level between the safety division/SAFE on one side,  and the management on the other side is so high that it triggers a duty of action by the company to act to impose sanctions to bring back a fully satisfactory working environment (law and order) for those involved, and for others who are affected by conflict. This duty is further sharpened by the security risk of such a high level of conflict between central HSE actors.

Further conclusion from the fact report is that there is no evidence that the management at Nyhamna has acted in a disrespectful, unduly, improper or harassing manner towards the main safety delegate in a way that violates the law.

The company has started the process to terminate an employment labour contract. This will be treated under the rules of this legislation. The company cannot provide further information from the case because of privacy reasons. This decision has been appealed, and we are awaiting further decisions from the court system.

In addition to this there has been implemented and worked continued with a number of other measures to improve working relations, and I can mention:

1. improvement and systematic cooperation in the working environment committee.(primary sidebar.)

2. improvement and systematsik cooperation in working committee.

3. Cooperation in NYH 2016 reorganisation.

4. Follow-up of Shell People Survey 2014, which is anchored in the working environment committee.

5. Meeting with representatives in August, where we discussed cooperation. Important that we distinguish cause and person so that this does not prevent cooperation.

6. Invited to dialogue with protective service Monday, 21 September

7. Weekly meeting between the Plant Manager and HVO – This means early involvement of the safety division.

It is important to highlight that the company look at the safety division and the employee representative`s as an important support to ensure a good and safe working environment at the plant, and the company wants to continue the good cooperation that we have a long experience with at the plant of Nyhamna.

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One Comment

  1. Bjørn A Jacobsen says:

    One should believe that this horrible case took place before the workers unions were establshed.
    In a national norwegian conflict it would be an enormous scandal !