Unpaid or reduced salaries, pressure on workers to sign termination agreements, abuse of state aid for payment of salaries and non-compliance with the law on safety and health at work, are some of the violations of workers’ rights with which workers will celebrate this year‘s International Workers’ Day.

The two largest unions, the Federation of Trade Unions of Macedonia (SSM) and the Confederation of Free Trade Unions (KSS), in a statement for MIA on the occasion of May 1, point out that in the past two years there has been a violation of worker’s rights regulated by the Labor Law and collective agreements. According to them, there is pressure on employees to sign blank contracts for termination of work, furloughs, non-compliance with the Covid-19 protocols, and there are frequent cases of transformation of employment contracts from indefinite to fixed term.

Since the beginning of the health crisis, the legal service of SSM through advice, legal opinions, interpretations, complaints, lawsuits and direct action before the authorities, has provided protection of worker’s rights in companies employing over 80,000 employees, said SSM.

The Confederation of Free Trade Unions (KSS) says that the pandemic further contributed to the abuse of laws and violations of workers’ rights, but according to them, the inspection services also failed.

We must point out that the institutions of the system that should protect workers responsible for labor law have completely failed, above all we must mention the Labor Inspectorate, which silently looks at the violation of workers’ rights, prescribed by law and collective agreements, says KSS.

The two largest trade unions demand that Covid-19 be recognized as an occupational disease for all workers, and that the infected workers be paid 100 percent of their salary.