Refreshing Pauses: Coca-Cola and Human Rights in Guatemala

By Henry J. Frundt | Go to book overview

11
Abduction

By June 1980, international support for the Coca-Cola campaign was at its high point. IUF affiliates in Belgium, France, and Spain held consumer boycotts. Five national groups staged production stoppages ( Belgium, France, Norway, New Zealand, and Venezuela). The Belgian FGTB youth organization set up boycott displays and literature tables all around the country. The French Food workers Federation banned the beverage from their own cafeterias, and asked similar actions from all other Coca-Cola distributors and plant workers. The international president of the United Food and Commercial Workers, the largest AFL-CIO affiliate, sent a telegram demanding that Coke immediately purchase the EGSA franchise "to show a good faith effort to putting an end to this senseless killing of human beings"( IUF 6-24- 84); Amnesty 1980).

Coke executives finally found themselves facing their own franchise owners. Australian manufacturers publicly dissociated themselves from Trotter's behavior. 1 The IUF affiliates in West Germany became such a thorn in the side of local management that Coke Atlanta put through a special request for the IUF to call them off. The Transport and General Workers Union confronted local bottlers in Great Britain. Whether or not part of the IUF's original plan, the strategy of separating the interests of parent and company affiliates was now effectively challenging various segments of the corporate organization. The Denmark franchise owner admitted there was a contract clause that permitted Coke to withdraw a license if there was a violation of ethical and business norms, and Coke Denmark had suffered a loss as a result of the boycott. He wanted it to end.

-153-

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Refreshing Pauses: Coca-Cola and Human Rights in Guatemala
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Introduction ix
  • 1 - The Lockout/Strike 1
  • 2 - Subdivision 17
  • 3 - The Church Takes Stock 28
  • 4 - First Settlement 42
  • 5 - Repression 56
  • 6 - The Corporate Forum 72
  • 7 91
  • 8 - Boycott! 105
  • 9 - The Spring Offensive 123
  • 10 - Negotiations Begin 135
  • 11 - Abduction 153
  • 12 - A Contract! 163
  • 13 - An Oasis Runs Dry 173
  • 14 - Occupation 187
  • 15 - The Third Campaign 200
  • 16 - Echoes of Victory 213
  • Concluding Reflections 222
  • Notes 233
  • Bibliography 245
  • Index 262
  • About the Author 269
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