ITUA introduces 36-hour working week

Judicial board in civil cases issued a ruling which can be an important precedent for the Russian workers whose workplaces were considered as harmful. They should be provided with three types of compensations guaranteed by the law.

In May of the last year trade union of the Ford factory filed a claim in court of Vsevolozhsk to invalidate the results of the assessment of the workplaces. The union was not satisfied with the situation when the workers are provided with only one kind of the compensations or benefits.

The workers whose workplaces have class of hazard 3.1 and above were not provided with compensations and benefits or gained only one kind of benefits—additional payment of 4% of hour rate, 7 additional days for vacancy and 36-hour working week for a couple of workplaces.

On April, 23 court of Vsevolozhsk sustained the claim of the union. According to this decision, workers who work in the harmful condition (majority of the Ford workers) should be provided with three kinds of compensations simultaneously. The company filed an appeal but it was in vain.

In this case the legislation suffers uncertainty and can be treated in different ways. Before that there were decisions that obliged employers to install one kind of compensations. Therefore, this decision of the court is an important precedent. The defendant will certainly appeal. But in the light of the anticipated reductions (Ford is going to dismiss about 500 workers) the introduction of the 36-hour working week can become a means to minimize the losses.

“Today’s victory fully confirmed the rightness of the union, long demanding the introduction of the 36-hour working week. We will raise this decision on the flag and will struggle for the reduced working week on every plant where our organizations exist”, stated Aleksey Etmanov, the chair of the Interregional trade union of autoworkers (ITUA).

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