France Telecom has denied implementing a policy aimed at deliberately creating stress causing people to resign saying company’s action in recent years may have been misinterpreted, causing a collective disorder that may have contributed to stressful work conditions,
“While France Telecom does not deny that the company’s action in recent years may have been misinterpreted, causing a collective disorder that may have contributed to stressful work conditions, the Group vigorously denies implementing a policy aimed at deliberately creating stress causing people to resign”, the company said in a statement.
Last week France Telecom's former chief executive Didier Lombard was investigated for his alleged role in a spate of staff suicides in the organization. He allegedly pushed tough measures in the organization which resulted in psychological harassment.
Didier Lombard who was at the helm of affairs of the company when more than 30 employees committed suicide in 2008 and 2009, resigned in early 2011.
When Lombard became chief executive of France Telecom in 2005 he presided over an efficiency drive in which tens of thousands of jobs were cut.
The company said that it has been informed about its indictment for psychological harassment by decision of the examining magistrate in charge of investigating the Group for more than two years.
The indictment gives the Group access to the investigation record and allows it to provide all items useful to its defence.
The company said initially it had been asserted that this situation was specific to France Telecom. Since then, it has become clear that it is an acknowleged societal feature and that many work organizations (including public services), confronted with similar issues of environmental change, have similar problems, some of which resulting in most dramatic consequences. All observers of work life in France point out occupational anxiety in France, specifically due to over involvement in the relationship of people to their job.
“For this reason, France Telecom has since endeavoured, on the one hand, to put forth a comprehensive, innovative action underlined by many external and internal observers, in response to its occupational environment while on the other hand recognizing the need to involve in restoring individual situations. It still formally denies being the source of a deliberate strategy of destabilizing its staff”, it said.