Council of Europe upholds the right to strike
Together with its three Belgian affiliates (CSC, FGTB and CGSLB), the ETUC launched a collective complaint in 2009 before the European Committee of Social Rights of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, against the practice of judicial intervention into the exercise of the right to strike.
The European Committee of Social Rights made it clear in its decision which became public yesterday that:
the intervention of a court in a collective action is authorised only when it concerns the protection of citizens against the use of violence by picket lines, or to safeguard the right of workers not to strike;
Belgian case-law does not always conform to the above restrictions;
the injunction procedure, as applied at present, does not offer sufficient procedural safeguards, and in particular does not entail contradictory debate. The result of the decision of the European Committee of Social Rights is important in respect of the situation in Belgium (see below the reaction by the Belgian trade unions). The ETUC urges the European Committee of Social Rights to ensure that the effective exercise of the right to strike is even better protected in the future.
Other documents related to the collective complaint n░ 59/2009: http://www.coe.int/t/dghl/monitorin...
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