Dear colleagues, trade unionists,

so far, I have not responded to the company’s statement of „My TPCA“ regarding the termination of releasing of union chairmen and the savings which will be reach. At first I had to read it twice because it didn’t make any sense to me and I thought I read it wrong. But unfortunately, I read correctly. This statement seemed to be a bad version of “Dikobraz” magazine. As far as I know, this type of releasing was invented by the company and therefore they knew what it meant. In addition, the chairman is paid from his tariff, which is paid to him regardless the place, where he sits. So I do not get it, where it the saving. It is just unfair provoking to chairman and trade unions as such that does not solve anything.

Furthermore, I have not signed the appendix of the union chairman releasing yet and, as the only chairmen, I am still not released. What is the reason? You can read this further, including the opinion of our legal representative. I got a clarification from the company what I should do as a not released chairman of the unions, but this is being dealt with by the Labour Code. I dared to send several e-mails to HR so I won’t write anything to them anymore. Fortunately, Facebook and our website work and there I can communicate without any comments from HR.

Email from company:

Within working hours is not possible to do any activity for the trade unions, including e-mail correspondence, etc., without requesting release for this activities. The reason for approving the release will be evaluate and subsequently will be decide whether the release will be realized, eventually whether with wage compensation or not.

Reaction of the legal representative of the OÚP

We do not consider TPCA’s response to be in accordance with the law or the situation, especially due this reasons:

  • The company constrains you to sign a partial release agreement, which is in some way an agreement not regulated by the law, complicated and it is logical that some things need to be clarified before it is signed, as it may affect your rights to wage, etc. (especially if the release rules are not very clear and some of them are in conflict with the law). The fact that the other chairmen have signed the agreement is not relevant;
  • It is quite bullying to your person– because the other chairmen were partially released, but you don´t due to your comments on the content of this agreement – while it is impossible to favor one trade union with others – that is essentially bullying because you are the only one who dared to „speak“ and you have some questions and comments on the agreement proposal.

However, we do not consider their interpretation that any release for union activity is subject to approval. Although they write in the first paragraph that they will respect the legislative, this answer is grossly inconsistent with this it because the Labor Code does not allow such an employer to do so.

But it certainly can not work as they want in TPCA –that you have to allow yourself every time there is a need for union work. That is not the case even with unreleased trade union officials. You are, of course, right in saying that their interpretation is disproportionately restrictive from the point of view of the Labor Code, which we also recommend to point out them in response.

This is opinion of our legal representative and we, OUP, fully agree with him.

At the moment, I am in the maintenance of Assy, where I have extra care, so I am monitored and strictly controlled. It even seems that I will have to afford for going to the toilet and say which way I am going to go and I will not be able to stop by to say a few words, because I could do union activity. Certainly you all know it, so it probably will be fine. It is a pity that this meter is not the same for all employees and it would probably be enough for those leaders to be as strict to themselves as they are on me. I see this as another pressure to my person. I know that this regulation came from the highest levels and we are only monitoring their statements to me.

Yours sincerely, Petr Biba