Worker fired in Babrujsk because of trade union membership

charter97.org

Dzmitry Sakalouski was fired from the Babrujsk Tractor Parts and Aggregates Plant.

The leadership of the plant’s primary organization of the Independent Belarusian Trade Union (IBTU) states that the reason for that was the participation of the adjuster in civil activities. The organization’s chairman Mikhail Kavalkou reported to BelaPAN about that.

According to him, the plant’s administration faced Dzmitry Sakalouski with the choice – either to work at the enterprise or to be a IBTU member.

"He refused to quit the trade union and was fired on 31 October as his contract expired. He has a two year-old son and an unemployed wife to support. The plant’s administration did not prolong the contract with Sakalouski knowing that he had a wife and a child, having shown the ideology of the state – aimed not at social security, as it is declared at the high level, but only at eliminating dissent for only being members of independent trade unions, leaving the family with no living maintenance", - Kavalkou claimed.

"For the 10 year of working at the plant I had no reprimands. They fired me exactly for being member of the independent trade union, there was no other reason", - Sakalouski said.

According to him, a year ago they already wanted not to prolong his contract, and only the appeal to the chairman of Babrujsk city executive committee Dzmitry Bonakhau stood in the way of the administration’s plans.

"This year I did not go to him. I will not go to Bonakhau each year. It is not good. I consider myself a good specialist in my trade. Workers did not complain about me", - Sakalouski said.

Although he intends to seek being reinstated in his position at the plant, Sakalouski does not rule out the possibility of working abroad: "If I do not manage to get reinstated, then Russia is big, there is enough work there. Belarus does no need specialists. I saw what kind of people come work in the machine building industry – milkmaids, bakers".

Kavalkou intends to address different institutions and go on hunger strike protesting against the actions of the plant’s administration regarding Sakalouski.

"If nothing helps, I have no choice but to go on hunger strike so that problems becomes known to the whole world. The problem is that from 2011 actual lawlessness has been taking place at the plant", - Kavalkou claimed.

The plant’s deputy director Uladzimir Jeliseenka refused to comment for BelaPAN on the situation with Dzmitry Sakalouski’s dismissal.

We would remind that a similar situation took place in the summer with another worker – the plant’s administration did not prolong the contract with a highly qualified adjuster, a trade union member Dzmitry Kurmaz, despite the lack of reprimands for his work and the protest of the co-workers. The trade union claimed that the worker was persecuted for belonging to the trade union, and the plant’s administration refused from commenting.

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