Judgment No. 2494
1. The decisions issuing the complainants a reprimand and those rejecting their internal complaints are set aside.
2. The complainants are referred back to the Agency in order that the latter may reinitiate the disciplinary procedure against them, if it deems such action to be appropriate.
3. Eurocontrol shall pay each of the complainants 500 euros in costs.
4. All other claims are dismissed.
The complainants were issued a reprimand on the grounds that they had participated in industrial action which management considered to be unlawful and for abandoning their post in the course of their shift. "Considering Eurocontrol's special missions relating to the safety of air navigation, the right to strike - the lawfulness of which is not disputed - must not lead to sudden stoppages of activity such as occur when shift work is abandoned. The complainants do not deny the charges made against them in this respect. The Tribunal therefore considers that, while the first ground mentioned by the Agency - namely, participation in unlawful strike action - could not legally justify the contested disciplinary measure, this second ground did justify a penalty."
grounds; enforcement; abandonment of post; disciplinary measure; censure; right to strike; strike; limits; acceptance
"Eurocontrol contends that Mr R.'s complaint is time-barred because it was filed more than three months after the notification of the decision rejecting his internal complaint. However, the Agency has produced no evidence of the date on which that decision was effectively notified. Failing such evidence, which it is the Agency's responsibility to provide, that complaint must be regarded as having been filed in good time."
complaint; decision; receivability of the complaint; internal appeal; time limit; date of notification; time bar; evidence; burden of proof; disclosure of evidence; lack of evidence; organisation's duties; refusal