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Netherlands – Staffing firm fights accreditation suspension

16 January 2014

Dutch staffing firm Flex International Ltd. is appealing against the suspension of its Labour Standards Foundation (SNA) accreditation certification for its office in the town of Hazeldonk, reports newspaper BN De Stem. The suspension has come as a surprise to some as allegations of wrong-doing were only recently raised against the company.

The accreditation certificate is considered something of a hallmark for Dutch staffing providers and buyers. Since 2012 buyers of staffing services who used accredited staffing providers have an indemnity against liability for unpaid pay, taxes, or premiums. During the first seven months of 2013, 306 companies have their certificates revoked, a year-on-year increase of +40%.

Flex International was reported to the Social Affairs Inspectorate by CNV Professionals, the largest body of the CNV trade union. According to the union, the company paid foreign drivers less than the minimum wage and did not pay taxes or premiums.

CNV Professionals launched the complaint after eight eastern European drivers working for a Dutch transport company through Flex International complained about their wages. Henry Stroek, Director of the Union, advised that he is pleased with the steps taken by the SNA.   

Eit Blanken, Director of Flex International, which has multiple branches across the Netherlands, denies all allegations. He claims that CNV Professionals are engaged in a smear campaign against his company. In an email to BN De Stem, Mr Blanken further advised that the suspension was temporary and that ‘adequate and appropriate measures’ were being taken to revert the suspension.

The SNA declined to comment on the matter. 

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