‘New Labour Code Legitimises Slavery’

The Parliament of Ukraine, the Verkhovna Rada has adopted in its first reading a new draft Labour Code (draft law №1658).   It is a major attack on the right of the workers of Ukraine and their trade unions.  At the same time an amendment to protect workers from -discrimination on grounds of gender and sexual orientation failed to be carried.  A mass protest organised by the Confederation of Free Trade Unions took place outside the Parliament.  Published below is a translation of the appeal issued by the KVPU calling for the protest.

Appeal to the citizens of Ukraine

The Confederation of Free Trade Unions of Ukraine (KVPU) calls for all citizens to assemble at the building of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on 5th November 2015 at 10:00 to defend our labour rights. This day the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine under the pretext of adoption the laws needed for the provision of EU visa liberalization, is intended to vote for the new draft of Labour Code of Ukraine (LC).

No Labour Code

The adoption of this draft LC will result in tragic consequences for working people, who are currently the poorest in Europe. Being under the crisis pressure and under the constant increase of costs for gas, heating, electricity as well as under the burden of constant food price increases, our fellow-citizens live in permanent fear of becoming jobless and being unable to feed their families.

At present the employers do not treat working people fairly and after the adoption of the proposed draft LC, they won’t have any obstacles to violate workers’ rights.

Let’s try to see what the authors of the draft LC have  prepared this time for us. We outline below some “innovations” of Vladymyr Groisman, Liudmila Denisova, Mykhailo Papiev and Stepan Kubiv.

  • The Employer is entitled to perform control over the employee’s work using the technical means (e.g. video).
  • Also the employer is given right to transfer any employee to another employer. It is not difficult to guess that such transference would be coercive as the employee will have to agree on that fearing to lose his job. The term of the transference could be infinite as the Draft LC doesn’t foresee any time frames. Also the geography (territory) of the transference is also indefinite in the Draft.
  • The reasons for dismissal of workers is broadened. For example, the disclosure of commercial secret. (salary amount discussed among friends – is it considered a secret?).
  • In case the employee hasn’t done an immunization or hasn’t been medically examined he\she could be dismissed from work without a notice.
  • Considerable pressure ion the Darft relates to single mothers, and especially those who have minor children.

The list of the “innovations” could go on…

Thus we call for all people to come to the Verkhovna Rada building and say “NO” to the adopting of the Draft Labour Code. Only if we are all together  we can prevent the slavery of the Ukrainians by not allowing the adoption of the Draft Labour Code.

Mykhailo Volynets

Head of the KVPU