Hungary - Trade unionists criticize plans for new constitition - February 28, 2011

Trade union leaders have sharply criticised a concept for a new constitution put forward by parliament's ad-hoc committee. Participants in a public hearing of the parliamentary committee said that the concept did not include stipulations concerning trade unions, guarantees for coordination between employers and employees, the security of employment and of wages or controls over working time. Tamas Szekely, head of the federation of trade unions for employees in the chemical and energy industries, said that the minimum wage should be defined in the constitution and that it should stipulate that social security contributions should not be spent on anything other than social services. Laszlo Varga, head of the cooperative forum of trade unions (SZEF), said the concept was neither clear nor straightforward. Peter Pataky, president of the national federation of trade unions (MSZOSZ), said a number of international documents referred to trade union rights and “if those documents are not ashamed of using the word trade union then the Hungarian constitution should not be either.”

English: Máté Komiljovics, union correspondent

This article was published in the Collective Bargaining Newsletter. It aims to facilitate information exchange between trade unions and to support the work of ETUC's collective bargaining committee. For more information, please contact the editor Maarten van Klaveren, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies (AIAS) You may find further information on the ETUI at, and on the AIAS at © ETUI aisbl, Brussels 2011.

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