Social & Economic rights

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

The Ministry says that there is no legal basis for amendments of the existing Rulebook on Work Booklet

Only after ten months from Praxis submission of an appeal and following an urgency letter for not proceeding upon the appeal did the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy respond that there was no legal basis for amendment of the existing Rulebook on Work Booklet but only for adoption of a new one. The Ministry also informed us that they would take Praxis appeal into consideration in the procedure of the adoption of a new Rulebook.

In its notice, the Ministry emphasised that a person who had found employment in the place of his/her temporary residence, but did not possess a work booklet, could address the competent body in his/her place of employment for issuance of a work booklet, and that the work booklet was not a precondition for employment. However, the Ministry completely ignored the fact that the possession of a work booklet is a precondition for registering with the National Employment Service (NES) and that persons who do not possess this document cannot receive help in finding employment or benefit from any other service of the NES. The Ministry also stated that there were initiatives to abolish the work booklet. However, this has not happened, the new Rulebook has not been adopted and the disputable provision of the present Rulebook is still in force and it either prevents or hinders refugees’ and IDPs’ chances to obtain a work booklet.

To remind ourselves, on 2 February 2012 Praxis submitted and Appeal to the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy for amendment of the Article 5, Paragraph 1 of the Rulebook on Work Booklet (Official Gazette of the Republic of Serbia, No. 17/97). According to Article 5, Paragraph 1 of the Rulebook, an unemployed person submits a request for issuance of a work booklet to the competent municipal administration body in his/her place of permanent residence, while the employed person submits the same request in the place of his/her employment. Consistent application of this article results in unemployed refugees and IDPs having to travel to their place of permanent residence to submit a request for issuance of a work booklet, which is an insurmountable problem for them. The stated provision of the Rulebook indirectly discriminates against refugees and IDPs because it deprives them of or hinders their exercise of the right to work booklet. As a result, they cannot be beneficiaries of the programmes and services of the NES.

The stated appeal suggests amendment of the Article 5, Paragraph 1 of the Rulebook on Work Booklet in a way so as to extend the territorial jurisdiction for submission of a request for issuance of work booklet to the competent administrative body in the submitter’s place of temporary residence.

See: Appeal for amendment of Article 5, Paragraph 1 of the Rulebook on Work Booklet
See: Response from the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy

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Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action