Unión Informática has appealed for legal protection against the Ministry of Labour in reference to the unexplainable delay to provide the trade registration. The law establishes a deadline of 90 days, which expired on June 2011. Carlos Tomada, Minister of Labour, is preventing the IT employees to fully organize themselves by restraining the inscription procedure. However, Unión Informática keeps growing and moving forward in the advocacy of all the IT workers.
The proceedings for the Unión Informática’s trade inscription were presented at the Ministry of Labour at the appropriate time during July 2011. In spite of the 90 days deadline established by the Trade Unions Law, in which the inscription must be awarded with no further requirements, Carlos Tomada has delayed signing it for over a year and a half. Even though the trade inscription is not necessary for Unión Informática to exist, it allows an institutional consolidation and it implies a greater support for all the IT workers.
Unión Informática has therefore appealed for legal protection before the labour courts so that justice can be issued urgently in order to improve the present worrying situation that many IT employees are facing.
Laws? Which Laws?
Such a complex situation can only be understood taking into consideration that the trade inscription is more than just a simple administrative procedure. This inscription allows trade entities to obtain the legal capacity, something essential for any institution that aspires to be fully functional. By putting illegal obstacles in the way of the process, the State demonstrates complete disdain for the right to constitute freely and with no previous authorization trade union federations, as established by the law 23.551. Such law pronounces on its sixth article that ‘the public authorities, specially the labor administrative one, (…) should refrain from restricting the autonomy of the trade union federations’, which can be accomplished, for example, by impeding the inscription process.
It is also important to notice that the Trade Union Federations Law regulates the right to ‘free and democratic trade organization, recognized by a simple inscription on a special register’, established on the article 14bis of the National Constitution. Therefore, the Ministry of Labour is not only denying the rights of thousands of IT workers and not meeting their duties as public officials, but also supporting the abusive, illegal, fraudulent and anti-union actions of the Argentinian IT companies.
Fair demands fall on deaf ears
Before presenting the demand to court, Unión Informática held a protest in front of the Ministry of Labor last July. Back then, the Secretary-General Pablo Dorin was welcomed by Norberto Ciavarino, Chief of Staff for the Ministry, who stated that he ‘was not aware of the situation’ and then shamelessly called for a meeting that he was not going to attend to originally.
While some IT companies, such as Symantec, close their doors and lay off hundreds of people and others, such as IBM and Hewlett Packard, freeze wages, Carlos Tomada turns a blind eye.
Unity is strength
In spite of the Ministry of Labour hindering the way, Unión Informática keeps growing and working towards better conditions for all the workers of this sector. Trade registration is a necessary step for the union to be consolidated, but it is not a requirement for it to exist or to carry out trade union and legal actions. This can be illustrated through the agreement with Sidif Ltd.; the progress against outsourcing policies and other irregularities at IBM; and the growing list of companies which employees turn to Unión Informática for organization