TEVA, Israeli Labor Federation Reach Agreement

Agreement Reached Between TEVA Asia and Israeli Labor Federation After Protests Against Poor Working Conditions

Tova Dvorin ,

TEVA Agreement 2013
TEVA Agreement 2013
Yosi Zeliger

The Histadrut (Israeli Labor Federation) has reached a new collective agreement today (Sunday) with the Israeli Pharmaceutical Firm TEVA Asia, located in Petach Tikva, for 250 of its workers. The agreement should be set in motion by the end of this week. 

The agreement includes a cumulative wage increase of 25% over a five-year period, subsidizing childcare for employees' children ages 3 to 12, providing tuition for higher education in universities and technical institutes for workers' children, and increasing contributions for pension funds.

Also included in the agreement is a clause promising no further protests for the next five years. The move is unique in the context of a general tendency in Israel to elicit change through activism, social justice, and multiple or prolonged strikes. 

The announcement follows mass protests earlier this month after CEO Jeremy Levin announced a large reduction in global manpower, sparking unease about the potential impact of the decision on the Israeli economy. TEVA was expected to dismiss 5,000 workers worldwide, and about 700-800 in Israel.

The move displeased both Finance Minister Yair Lapid and Labor leader and Opposition Head MK Shelly Yechimovich, who each made public statements calling on Levin to reduce the number of potential layoffs.

Yoav Simchi, the head of the ILF, proudly declared that this is the result "of cooperation between the Israeli Labor Federation and the administration of TEVA Pharmaceuticals [. . .] beginning this month, 250 workers will begin receiving a 25% pay raise in addition to other benefits." He lauded the decision to include a clause about corporate stability, promoting it as a mark of "employee confidence in the agreement" itself. 

The negotiations between the two organizations have been led by Chairperson of Factory Workers Hania Gilboa, herself a mother of four.

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, an international pharmaceutical company headquartered in Petah Tikva, is the largest generic drug manufacturer in the world, with facilities located in Israel, North America, Europe, and South America.