Lukashenka makes it harder for workers to leave woodworking plants

2012 2012-12-10T16:14:31+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en

Aliaksandr Lukashenka, by a presidential decree issued on 7 December, ruled that employees of woodworking plants may not quit their job without the employer`s permission before the expiry of their labor contract.

The decree was signed one week after the Belarusian leader warned that he would ban workers from leaving the country's woodworking plants until the completion of their modernization. The document requires all employees at the plants to sign fixed-term labor contracts.

Workers will be allowed to appeal the employer's refusal to let them quit to the chair of the regional or Minsk executive committee.

The restriction will be lifted once the modernization of the company is over, according to the presidential press office.

The decree is also aimed at discouraging workers from getting fired for poor work. Under the decree, employees that will be fired for the improper discharge of their duties in the period will have to repay all of their monthly bonuses to the enterprise.

In addition, the decree stipulates that individuals will be fined 10 to 100 times the Base Rate and companies will be slapped with fines of 50 to 500 times the Base Rate for delaying the modernization of the woodworking plants.

While inspecting a woodworking plant in Barysau, Minsk region, on 30 November, Mr. Lukashenka warned that workers would not be allowed to "resign without the permission of the manager."

"If [he] permits [this], let [him] go, if [he] doesn't, [he] must work. Violators [should be punished with] compulsory labor," he said.

Mr. Lukashenka added that the companies would have to start paying between $400 and $500 to their employees in the first quarter of 2013, or nearly double the current pay.

Independent trade unions condemned Mr. Lukashenka`s remarks and said that they would inform the International Labor Organization about the proposed restriction. //BelaPAN