This is the last article you can read this month
You can read more article this month
You can read more articles this month
Sorry your limit is up for this month
HUNGARIAN MPs approved sweeping attacks on workers’ rights today, passing a Bill denounced as the “slave labour law” by trade unions and the opposition.
The law, introduced by the ruling Fidesz party of Prime Minister Viktor Orban, raises the legal limit on overtime from 250 hours to 400 a year and extends the period management has to settle accrued overtime pay from one to three years.
Unions say the extension will allow bosses to avoid paying premium rates for overtime, as they gain more flexibility to give workers fewer hours than normal at less busy times and then claim the average over three years has been within ordinary hours. Justin Spike, writing in the Budapest Beacon earlier this year, observed that employers would gain greater power to deny employees any time off in busy periods or any work in slack periods.
The unions have held giant protests against the Bill, which Hungarian Confederation of Trade Unions leader Laszlo Kordas said will force workers to do up to 50 days a year overtime. Employers may now legally make overtime arrangements with individual workers outside collective bargaining agreements, and are no longer obliged to consult or negotiate such matters with unions.
Hungary’s Workers Party, as its communist party is known since the term “communist” is banned, joined trade union protests against the law, though Mr Kordas refused to receive a solidarity statement from the party.
The government has been open about the Bill’s origins as a response to specific demands from German car manufacturers that employ workers in Hungary.
Foreign and Trade Minister Peter Szijjarto said that “most investments in Hungary come from North Rhine-Westphalia. So it is very important that North Rhine-Westphalian companies investing in Hungary have clearly welcomed legislative proposals that further enhance the competitiveness of the country and improve the job market.”
Opposition MPs of both right and left — the fascist Jobbik party opposes the law as do the socialists — blew whistles and sirens to disrupt the Bill, tried to derail it with 2,800 amendments and even occupied the Speaker’s chair in an unsuccessful bid to stop it passing.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £1 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.