the state of health emergency “violates workers’ rights” according to the CNCDH

Social democracy is among the collateral victims of the Covid-19 epidemic. This is one of the messages that the National Consultative Commission on Human Rights (CNCDH) sent on Thursday, January 28, in a “Declaration” approved unanimously (minus three abstentions). She expresses her “Concern” in front of “Infringements of fundamental workers’ rights” that were caused by government actions to curb the circulation of SARS-CoV-2. For this institution, whose positions have no binding value on the executive, we must lift this as quickly as possible. “Exceptional regime”.

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In the sights of the CNCDH, there is a series of decrees and ordinances, adopted “Without consultation” with the social partners, who “Made the exercise difficult” of certain attributions. This includes the rules relating to the consultation of elected staff members sitting on the social and economic committees (CSE) of companies. The rules in question temporarily shorten the time limits for obtaining the opinion of employee representatives on management decisions or projects. Taken on behalf of “State of health emergency”, such measures “May have hindered the action” members of the CSE.

The CNCDH also criticizes the multitude of texts produced by the administration with the aim of defining the precautions to be followed in the workplace: health protocols, questions and answers, professional advice sheets, good practice guides, etc. “Without any legislative or regulatory authorization and, most often, without consultation”, these documents are “Endowed with uncertain legal force”, while being “Liable to be withdrawn without any publicity” : using it “Undermines the predictability, intelligibility and accessibility of standards”.

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“Take strong action”

Another theme to which the CNCDH draws the government’s attention: occupational health and safety. The facts show that it has been difficult to “Find places for social dialogue” enabling these subjects, which are essential in the context of a pandemic, to be addressed in good conditions. CSEs did not succeed “To play a sufficient role” in this area, even though they are supposed to do so, through ad hoc committees which replaced the health, safety and working conditions committee – a body abolished by the reform of the labor code of September 2017 . “Reinforced fora for social dialogue are necessary in this area”, considers the CNCDH.

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