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Senate has adopted the draft new Labor Code

Today at plenary session of the Senate of Parliament of the RK deputies of chamber, having considered in two readings, have adopted the draft new Labor Code of the RK.

The draft Labor Code is prepared in fulfillment of the order of the Head of State within the framework of implementing the Plan of Nation - 100 steps on implementation of five institutional reforms (step 83).

The conceptual model of the new Labor Code proposes to define explicitly the limit lines of the state intervention into the sphere of labor relations between the employer and workers, and taking into account ensuring balance of the parties interests, to distribute their role and responsibility.

The state will establish the minimum labor standards of guarantees and compensations to workers and provide tight control of their execution from the part of employers.

Relations between the employer and workers will be mostly built on the principles of self-regulation, with strengthening the potential of collective negotiations and the agreements concluded between them in such spheres as hiring, staff appointments, dismissal of employees, working hours, labor conditions and remuneration.

The draft Code for employers simplifies the procedures of hiring, staff appointments, dismissal of employees, labor conditions and remuneration of the workers. At that the basic labor guarantees and the rights of workers are set forth with possibility of their expansion through the signed individual, collective contracts and agreements, as well as instruments of their rights and interests protection.

The role of labor unions in ensuring the rights and interests of workers, including taking into account the opportunities provided for in recently adopted Law "On Labor Unions" is expanded.

Thus, it will increase the parties' concernment in the conclusion of collective contracts and agreements that will promote development of unionization practice.

This model of the labor relations' is in conformity to standards of OECD.

The main innovations provided for in the draft Code are:

1. Simplification of procedures for changes in terms and conditions of the employment contract, especially in the situation of the crisis phenomena in economy.

This novel provides for creating such conditions when it is easier for the employer to introduce the regime of part-time and temporary appointment of employee to other work instead of cutting their number. 

For example, to preserve the job positions, it is proposed to establish the term of temporary staff appointments for the entire period of idle time of the enterprise (instead of one month). It is also provided to grant the employer the right for the worker transfer (in case of idle time of the enterprise) to any available vacancies not contraindicated for health reasons.

2. The ground for the employment contract termination at the initiative of the employer at "decrease in output, the performed works and the rendered services which caused deterioration of an economic condition of the organization" is entered.

Under the existing Labor Code the staff cutting is made on the basis of "the number or staff of workers cutting" (subparagraph 2 of paragraph 1 of Article 54 of the currently in force Code). At that the employee is notified in one month without explaining the reasons, and at staff cutting the compensation at a rate of an average salary for one month is paid.

Considering that in present crisis conditions, there is a high probability of the employer's taking measures for staff cutting, the above ground is highlighted, but at that the employment contract termination shall be possible at simultaneous observance of the following conditions:

- closing of structural division (shop, site);

- lack of possibility to appoint the worker to other work;

- the written notice of labor union not less than in one month before with the indication of the economic grounds forming the basis for employment contract termination.

At terminating the labor relations on this basis compensation at a rate of two-month salary is paid to employees.

Besides, it is proposed to grant the employer with the right to terminate the employment contract with the employees who reached the retirement age established by the legislation of the RK upon explicit regulation of the termination procedure. At that it is provided for possibility of annual extension of the employment contract with the worker who reached retirement age and possessing high professional and qualification level taking into account its working capacity (by analogy with the public and civil servants).

3. It is proposed to grant to the employer the right for establishing the trial period to any categories of workers.

This innovation is conditioned by existing prohibition for employers to establish the trial period for the persons under 18 years, persons with disabilities, graduates of higher education and VET institutions who start their work for the first time. This prohibition does not promote employment of the citizens belonging to these categories as employers, as a rule, do not employ them.

4. It is provided for introduction of integrated approach to the solution of issues concerning employment of the persons with disabilities.

According to the currently in force legislation the regulation of labor relations with persons with disabilities is executed based on the employer's obligations related to employment of the persons with disabilities, providing their workplaces with the special equipment (taking into account restrictions and disorders of health functions), providing additional leaves (not less than 15 days), establishment of the reduced working hours (no more than 36 hours per week), prohibition to involve them in overtime works, etc. In practice above-mentioned requirements do not promote fully employment of persons with disabilities.

The draft Law "On population employment" being under consideration in the Parliament provides for establishing the compulsory for  employer quota for employment of the persons with disabilities at the rate  of 2-4% of total number of employees with creation of special workplaces. At that it is proposed to subsidize the employer's costs for necessary equipment of a special workplace of the persons with disabilities at the expense of the state.

In its turn the draft Code provides for preservation of prohibition to involve the persons with disabilities in overtime works. Standards for applying the summarized accounting of working hours and the reduced working hours (no more than 36 hours per week) remain unchanged.

Thus, decrease in the certain burden on employers, with division of responsibility between the state, the employer and labor unions, will promote the solving the issues concerning employment of the persons with disabilities.

5. In relation to issues concerning the employees remuneration the draft Code contains the provision that the employer independently (by adoption of the employer acts) or on initiative of the workers' representatives (by means of the collective agreement conclusion of the) shall solve the issue on selection of the form, system and rates of the workers' salary of.

Thus, it is proposed to grant the right to employers and representatives of workers to regulate the amount of remuneration for works at night, in days off and holidays, and also in the overtime mode through the labor and collective contracts. At that the remuneration over the established time standards should not be less than one-and-a-half size of the main rate

6. It is proposed to strengthen the public control sphere by entering the institute of technical inspectors from among the workers nominated by labor union and to provide their powers within the framework of production councils on labor protection and safety created on a parity basis.

It is planned to assign to the above councils the following functions: organization of the employer and workers joint actions aimed at ensuring labor protection requirements, carrying out checks of conditions and labor protection on workplaces, informing the workers about their results.

Production councils will be headed on parity conditions by the representatives of workers and the employer on a rotational basis with frequency of 2 years. Production council decisions will be obligatory for the employer. 

Changed on 5 November, 2015 - 13:06
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