Human rights defender Leanid Sudalenka: “Decree No. 9 is unconstitutional”

2012 2012-12-17T16:21:50+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
Leanid Sudalenka

Leanid Sudalenka

Article 41 of the Constitution entitles every Belarusian citizen to free choice of work. Apart from that, according to the basic law of the country, all people are equal before the law regardless of their property, all people have the right to a defense in court.

"Contracted form of employment in our country has existed for about 13 years, and during all this time, employers have used it as a tool against dissent among employees, for example, dismissed a worker knowing that the person does not support the "general line." And having the "red card", the people could not get a job. Now the situation seems to take the opposite direction – the decree prescribes to extend employment contracts for a maximum period, new contracts will be signed for the period of the implementation of investment projects. Even with the current situation, the employee was sometimes forced to commit truancy, when he was offered a better-paid job, and the employer did not want to lose a valuable employee. Now the worker, having had the courage to sign a contract with this wording, can never know the date of hits expiry," says the legal inspector.

According to the Decree, the denial of cancellation of the contract may be appealed only with the chairman of the executive committee. But what about the protection of one’s rights in court? "In the form the provision is sets out, the employee, in principle, will not be deprived of the right to judicial review, but in conjunction with other provisions of the Decree one may come to the conclusion that the legislature had in mind only the “governor’s appeal.” It is hard to imagine in what direction the practice of law will move, but today we can safely assume that by signing this contract, the employee in court may stumble upon a proposal to solve the problem only in the local "white house," says Leanid Sudalenka.

He was surprised that, according to the Decree, the workers will receive such "carrots" as monthly payments, and they will not be included in the salary. Is it a legal salary in an envelope? Which he then, upon termination of the contract, will have to return. In case he does not, the employer will charge it in court, and recover it in a simplified manner by defining a court order of a 3-day period. If when retired the employee did not find other work and could not return previously received "carrots", the court would force him to return to his job.

"We can find out in the very near future the way the actors in the decree will act. The government has 3 months, including the need to take a special resolution, which will explain the application of the Decree," said the legal inspector.