December 8, 2020

The situation with workers’ rights 1 May – 31 October 2020, semi-annual infographic

The rapid growing health crises caused by the Coronavirus Pandemic, has produced unforeseeable economic and social consequences, which humankind will have to yet overcome.  Female and male workers were the first who faced this challenge, a challenge which we may inevitably call, labour crises.  For them, such crises meant preservation of their own health and that of their loved ones, but it also meant a struggle for preserving one’s own existence.

During the entire course of this crises, including the 1 May – 31 October, 2020, reporting period, we continued to provide uninterrupted free legal aid, to all workers.  This Biannual Report is based on 155 reported cases received in our daily communication with the workers and during the course of our regular labour rights observation efforts.

The data collected so far speaks about protection measures which fail to reflect workers’ needs, thus failing to provide due protection of their rights. The data relating to violations of the predefined measures, in addition to layoffs, lowering of or failure to pay workers’ wages, all point to the employers’ illegal profiteering practices, on the backs of the workers, in these times of great health, social and economic crises, which is serving to reinforce the already unequal worker-employer power relations. The gender dimension during this crisis has established, yet again, a significantly higher number of violations reported by women, taking a share of more than 65% of the total number of registered cases.

In contrast to this, our 1 November, 2019 – 30 April, 2020 Biannual Report (Полугодишен извештај) witnessed 214 violations or/and reports relating to labour rights.  This was due to the most critical six-week period, immediately after the announcement of the state of emergency, when we received 145, out of 214 reports.

This Biannual Report on the State of Labour Rights and the data related to each of the 155 cases, including 757 workers, are available for download by clicking on the info-graph, below.  This Info-Graph covers the 1 May – 31 October, 2020, period and it was made available via the Increasing Productivity Through Enhancing the Work Relations Legal Framework in North Macedonia project, funded by the UK Good Governance Fund.  The opinions and positions stated herein do not necessarily reflect the opinions and positions of the UK Government.