On 5 November 2020 our international parent union, IndustriALL Global Union and IndustriAll European Trade Union sent a letter to Turkish Grand National Assembly (GNAT) Speaker Mustafa Şentop to withdraw the proposed Omnibus Law from its agenda.
Dear Mr. Speaker,
We are writing this letter to you on behalf of IndustriALL Global Union and industriAll European Trade Union, both representing millions of workers in mining, energy and manufacturing industries in Europe and worldwide, including in Turkey, to call on Grand National Assembly of Turkey (GNAT) to withdraw the proposed Omnibus Law from its agenda as it contains provisions which are detrimental to the gained rights and entitlements of workers. Furthermore, trade unions have not been consulted on this draft law.
Taking full account of the reports submitted at our last National Affiliates’ meeting about this proposed Omnibus Law, both organizations are extremely concerned about its potential negative impacts on workers and trade unions. As a matter of fact, three main national confederations in Turkey, TÜRK-İŞ, HAK-İŞ and DİSK, have issued a joint statement expressing their common concerns about the regulations of the proposed Omnibus Law and demanding its withdrawal from the agenda of the GNAT.
The proposed Omnibus Law would expand the scope of precarious employment contracts, particularly the promotion of fixed-term jobs. Both organizations join the national confederations and our sectoral affiliated trade unions in finding this proposed law extremely problematic since workers under the age of 25 and over the age of 50 employed with fixed-term contracts cannot benefit from severance and notice payments as well as job security provisions. This would result in unacceptable discrimination among working people in the country and cause the deterioration of working arrangements and social justice.
The national confederations also report that this type of discrimination is against the principle of equality referred to in the Constitution of Republic of Turkey as it would prevent workers
from enjoying their right to social protections pertaining to unemployment, invalidity, old age, death, occupational injury, occupational disease and maternity.
Along with this serious content-wise problem, there is a huge lack of consultation in the process since trade unions were not informed and consulted before the submission of the proposed draft law to the GNAT. Trade unions only managed to find out about this draft law through the media. This is not acceptable.
Likewise, even members of the GNAT did not have a proper discussion in the law-making process because the 43-article draft was not included in the agenda of the Parliamentary Committee, which prevented the committee members to thoroughly examine and make their amendment proposals.
Therefore, IndustriALL Global Union and industriAll European Trade Union join the national confederations in in their call to the GNAT to withdraw the proposed Omnibus Law from its agenda as it would seriously undermine the workers’ rights and entitlements, especially severance payment and social protections, which are in place under the guarantee of the Constitution and laws in the country.
We are sending this letter to the party groups in the Grand National Assembly of Turkey calling on them to listen to the voice and wishes of the workers and trade unions in Turkey. We expect them to take responsibility and establish a proper process of consultation with the unions, in a spirit of genuine dialogue, particularly at this difficult time of the COVID-19 pandemic that is causing great damage to human life, economies and societies at large.
We anticipate your swift action and response.
Valter Sanches Luc Triangle
General Secretary General Secretary
IndustriALL Global Union IndustriALL European Trade Union