Trade unions in public administration

From Encyklopedia Administracji Publicznej

TRADE UNIONS IN PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION – in democratic countries the right of establishing and functioning of trade unions is part of the freedom of association and also applies to public administration employees. This is confirmed by international conventions and international agreements, including the UN or the International Labour Organisation. However, there are some limitations to the functioning of t.u. in public administration. These limitations vary depending on the country and the adopted → civil service models. As a model, the scope of trade union rights is the widest where employment or payroll regulations are similar to those found in the private sector. In some ways these rights are limited where there is a public-legal model of regulation (top-down regulations set by the state, and not the result of collective bargaining). Most often these regulations concern: 1. limitation of the coalition law in public administration (prohibition – rarely absolute, limitation to one union), restrictions for persons in managerial positions; 2. restrictions of the right to strike (either complete or for certain jobs or categories of officers); 3. restrictions on concluding collective agreements in employee matters (excluding administration in general from collective agreements or excluding certain matters from systemic regulation); 4. restrictions by the public budget of “negotiation area” between the public employer and the union representing public employees. (→ strike in public administration) [D. Długosz]

Literature: Z. Hajn, Zbiorowe prawo pracy. Zarys system [Collective labour law. Outline of the system], Warszawa 2013 ■ Public Service Employment Relations in Europe: Transformation, Modernization or Inertia?, ed. S. Bach, L. Bordogna, G. Della Rocca, D. Winchester, London – New York 1999 ■ Industrial Relations Systems in the Public Sector in Europe, ed. T. Olsen, Oslo 1996.