‘Boss napped’ Goodyear managers released by French workers

Two Goodyear managers held captive by workers at a tyre plant in the French city of Amiens have been freed.

AAP reports that the managers were freed by police after spending two days in captivity. After their release, union members set fire to tyres outside the plant to continue their protest.

The tyre plant has had a troubled past. It has seen much industrial action and Goodyear has been attempting to shut or sell it for the last five years.

As Stuff.co.nz reports, the workers had come to accept that they would be made redundant. The “boss napping” was not an attempt to keep the plant open. Its aim was to secure sacked workers receive as good a severance deal as possible.

“Clearly it was no longer possible to keep fighting for our jobs,” Mickael Wamen, the union president, told LCI television.

“So we decided to change tactics and fight for the largest compensation possible.”

Specifically, the union was demanding payouts per worker of €80,000 (A$122,171) plus €2,500 for each year worked.

“Boss-napping” is known to occur from time to time in France. Its purpose is generally to grab attention in a theatrical fashion and bosses don’t usually come to any harm.

Police tend to not intervene and allow mediators to settle the incidents as labour disputes. In this case, police intervention was authorized by a judge who took into account the history of industrial action at the tyre plant.

A dozen police were involved in the action.

Image: AAP