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25 Feb 2013

Lukashenko: FTUB should protect interests of private-sector workers

MINSK, 25 February (BelTA) – The development of trade union movement in Belarus was discussed at a meeting of President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko with Chairman of the Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus (FTUB) Leonid Kozik on 25 February, BelTA has learnt.

The President noted that he heard different feedback about the work of trade unions and wanted to know what is really going on in the trade union movement, what is the attitude of labor collectives to trade unions now.

Alexander Lukashenko emphasized the need to protect the rights of people working in the private sector. “They are our people and they need protection. We agreed that you will take care of labor collectives working in the private sector; if labor rights or human rights are not respected there, you will deal with that,” the head of state said.

According to Leonid Kozik, the Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus remains united, and its membership increases by several thousand people every year. This means that young people are eager to join trade unions and take part in their activities.

The FTUB Chairman informed the head of state what trade unions do to protect interests of employees. The scope of responsibilities of trade unions includes occupational safety, conveniences, and hot means for employees. The number of industrial accidents reduced in 2012.

The President ordered to keep working further to ensure adequate working conditions and the necessary conveniences for employees.

When it comes to the private sector, certain issues can come to the forefront. For example, some company chiefs impede the establishment of trade unions, which runs afoul of the existing legislation. Therefore, the Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus should team up with the government to address the issue.

Alexander Lukashenko reminded that the FTUB promised to provide accommodation for participants of the 2014 ice hockey championship at its facilities located near Minsk. “I think trade unions will benefit from that, because the people who will come here are not poor. However, one should be ready for that. This is about the image of our country,” the head of state said.

Alexander Lukashenko and Leonid Kozik discussed recreation and recuperation services provided by the Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus in 2012. Leonid Kozik informed that starting from 1 January 2013, trade union members will pay 25% less for vouchers to health farms run by the FTUB. Taking into consideration that these vouchers are additionally reimbursed by grassroots trade unions and sometimes by a company, trade union members will be able to get these vouchers at an affordable price.

 

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