On February 8 the ILO Moscow Office hosted a presentation of the book on application of international mechanisms for protection of labour and trade union rights.
The book was published by the Centre for Social and Labour Rights under support of the International Labour Organization and the Confederation of Labour of Russia. Experts and researchers were engaged in writing the book.
The presentation brought together the book’s authors, experts from the Centre for Social and Labour Rights, the ILO, the Moscow Entrepreneurs’ Club and the Confederation of Labour of Russia, labour rights researchers and trade unionists.
The book consists of five parts explicitly describing application of international instruments for protection of labour rights and rights to freedom of association. They include such instruments as appeals to the International Labour Organization, the European Court of Human Rights, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, complaints in line with the Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and control mechanisms of the European Social Charter.
The book contains precise reference materials about international institutions as well as documents and conventions regulating their activity. The authors demonstrate opportunities for applying international mechanisms for protection of labour and trade union rights – they describe procedures of filing complaints (appeals) to international institutions and their consideration, recommendations for making complaints with an indication of mail address, telephone number and other necessary contacts. The book also cites references to the most significant cases addressing labour relations investigated by the above-mentioned institutions.
“We established deep contacts with trade unions and workers, applied international mechanisms for protection of labour rights in practice. Unfortunately, the international mechanisms are rather rarely used in Russia and on the post-Soviet space,” said Elena Gerasimova, director of the Centre for Social and Labour Rights. “There is a huge gap between expert knowledge and application of these mechanisms in practice.”
“Therefore we decided to unify all this information and tried to make a rather easy-to-use and easy-to-read book. The book is comprehensible for ordinary people. It contains clear recommendations where to appeal,” she said.
“The book has a strong practical orientation, it recounts in a highly professional manner mechanisms that are applied by international structures – beginning from the ILO that seeks promotion of labour rights protection to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development that does not specialize in protection of labour rights, but has a certain division concerning this issue,” said Elena Machulskaya, a member of the Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations, who wrote an introduction to the book.
“Interaction with international structures such as the ILO, for instance, is very important,” the president of the Confederation of Labour of Russia, Boris Kravchenko, said. “Judging from our experience this helps to bring the dialogue with governmental bodies and employers to an absolutely different level. I believe that this book is extremely important for shopfloor and middle level trade union activists as well as for trade union federations and associations’ leaders to realize, when and how these mechanisms can be applied. We will disseminate this publication among trade union activists and among leaders and activists of friendly organizations.”