Russian business associations are lobbying for a Labor Code reform that would simplify the procedure for dismissing employees, Ura.ru reported.
The Russian Trilateral Commission on the Regulation of Social and Labor Relations will consider the proposal at the end of May. The commission is coordinated by Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova who oversees social issues.
In particular, it is proposed to dramatically reduce the requirements for employers to notify employees prior to job termination – from two months to two weeks in advance.
Simplifying the job termination procedure at the legislative level is a rather dangerous initiative for workers and mainly benefits the business community, said Pavel Sigal, First Vice President of Opora Russia SME association.
“The problem is that not all enterprises have trade unions, which in case of conflict can resolve the differences between the employer and the employee. This crisis is going to lead to lay-offs, but if people are notified two weeks before it happens, they are unlikely to find a job in such a short time, especially highly specialized professionals working in smaller cities,” the expert explains. “This leads to a situation where businesses are supported at the expense of workers, and generates a new problem, one that the government will face: how to help people who have lost their jobs and have to repay their loans and provide for their families. The government is doing a lot to support people’s real incomes and prevent the Russian GDP from shrinking due to the pandemic. But workers will be under continuous stress, wondering if they will be laid off or not. This will do little to improve the quality of their work.”
Although labor laws do need to be reviewed, doing something that would worsen the situation of the workforce during a crisis is extremely dangerous and may provoke social tension and unemployment, Pavel Sigal emphasized.