A COMPANY STRONGER THAN JUSTICE AND THE LAW? The court ruled for the second time in favor of the workers of Maritime Traffic, the employer on the move

This is the decision of the High Court in Podgorica, made for the second time. After the first decision, the workers were offered a new, amended employment contract, but outside the law. They were not given eight days to declare themselves, and then they were fired again. They sought their rights again in court and finally won the battle, although even now the president of the independent union “Pomorski saobracaj” Ivan Vucinovic, is not sure that the employer will respect the court decision.

– I assume that they will follow the current pattern, they will find a way not to return us to work – said Vučinović.

He reminds that more than ten workers were fired on various grounds, and two because they dared to contact him. He himself was fired, as he says, because of the organization of the union. The case on his lawsuit due to the assignment to another job is also in progress. He considers that “harassment” and a procedure that was supposed to stop the union’s activities.

Lawyer Jovan Pejović, who represents 14 workers who seek their employment rights in court, explains that Maritime Traffic is obliged to return three workers who have a final verdict to work within eight days. He points out that this is a confirmed last year’s verdict of the Basic Court. Despite everything, there is doubt.

– Instead of returning to work after that verdict of the Basic Court, the company Pomorski saobracaj offered these workers a penal place, more precisely, their task should have been to count the cars that do not stop by the ferry. The court also found that these were illegal dismissals. I believe that the management of Maritime Traffic will continue to violate the rights from work. Here, the entire trade union organization was fired. People are afraid to say who is in the union, that is an absurd situation and discrimination – Pejović thinks.

According to him, the court practice is that the court benefits workers when it comes to employment rights, and trade union commissioners are protected by special legal regulations. He also says that the claims of workers for unpaid salaries based on past work, unpaid overtime hours, then compensation for unused vacations, as well as based on unpaid holiday pay, refer to the period from 2008 to 2017.

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