Days after McDonald’s franchisee workers had taken stance in the Peruvian streets over a safer workspace, on Friday (December 27th) night, the Peruvian Government had announced a slew of measures to stiffen penalties for the companies which would be found guilty of workplace accidents, stepping up labor laws after a couple had died by electrocution earlier this month in an Arcos Dorados’ restaurant while cleaning the kitchen.
Arcos Dorados, the largest franchisee of McDonald across the globe operating 29 restaurants in Peru, had been the centerpiece of latest labor law reform, while deaths of two McDonald’s franchisee workers earlier this month had sparked a protest of restaurant employees over a safer workspace and protestors had taken the streets with placards saying “justice for Porras and Campo,” the couple who died in the Arcos Dorados accident.
Following days of protest, on Thursday (December 26th) the Peruvian Labor department officials had agreed to a sweeping overhaul of the nation’s labor law, as Peruvian Labor Minister Sylvia Caceres was quoted saying in a statement on Friday (December 27th) night that after reports of any kind of accidents in workspaces, there would be an automatic closure of ten to twenty days where the accidents had taken place, while the closure could be extended up to 30 days if a company was found guilty of an incident.
Meanwhile, without mentioning the deaths of Porras, 18 and Campo, 19, the couple whose death by electrocution had fueled up a nationwide protest, Caceres said in a press briefing on Friday (December 27th) night, “Closure (for the 30-day maximum) will be considered when it has been determined that the employer has breached its obligations and thereby affected the health and life of its workers.
We believe that this is a step forward to reinforce the dissuasive capacity that the labor inspectorate must exert for employers who deliberately and irresponsibly breach their obligations and affect the health of our workers. ”