Planned Labour Code changes favour workers

HIGHER severance pay, a shorter work week, and limitations on temporary work contracts are among the changes that Labour Minister Viera Tomanová wants to make to the Labour Code.

Tomanová plans to submit a draft revision to the government by March 2007.

Slovakia's labour unions, which support the ruling socialist Smer party, are demanding that the work week not exceed 48 hours. They also want all employees to enjoy the same rights, regardless of whether they are on part-time or full-time contracts.

Currently, part-time employees who work fewer than 20 hours per week are entitled to a shorter notice period and lower severance pay.

"This is discrimination, and we want to eliminate it," said Vladimír Mojš from the Confederation of Labour Unions (KOZ) umbrella group.

PM Robert Fico also supports changes to the Labour Code.

"It is definitely not right that Slovakia has a law which enables people to work from dawn till dusk. I think there should be certain limits," Fico said recently.

However, employers, who are happy with the current Labour Code, are against the changes being demanded by the labour unions, the Pravda daily wrote.

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