NATIONAL TRADE UNION CONFEDERATION OF MOLDOVA

State control in the field of occupational safety and health it is up to the State Labor Inspectorate

20.11.2020

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Due to the firm position of the National Trade Union Confederation of Moldova (CNSM), at the Parliament meeting of the Republic of Moldova on 19 November 2020, the bill for amending some normative acts was voted in both readings (Law No. 140/2001 on the State Labor Inspectorate; Law on Occupational Safety and Health at work No. 186/2008; Law No. 131/2012 on State Control of entrepreneurial activity; Labor Code; Contravention Code etc.).

The purpose of the project is to re-establish the State Labor Inspectorate (SLI) the powers of control in the field of occupational safety and health at work and in the field of labor relations, ensuring its functional integrity in accordance with ILO Convention No. 81/1947 on labor inspection in industry and trade, and Convention No. 129 on labor inspection in agriculture, ratified by the Republic of Moldova.

At the same time, the changes aim to ensure the functionality of the system control in the field of occupational safety and health and unblocking the conflict situation of jurisdiction between the 10 competent authorities in the field of occupational safety in conducting state control and research accidents at work.

The project contains a series of amendments to other laws in force. Thus, the Labor Code will be supplemented by the rule that will give the SLI the competence for control in the field of occupational safety and health at work. The amendments to the Contravention Code attributes to the SLI the competence to find contraventions in the field of occupational safety and health. At the same time, SLI will not be excluded from the incidence of Law No. 131/2012 on state control over entrepreneurial activity.

We would like to mention the constructive position of the Ministry of Health, Labor and Social Protection of the Republic of Moldova in cooperation for the return of control responsibilities in the field of occupational safety and health at work to the State Labor Inspectorate, in accordance with international acts to which the Republic of Moldova is a party.

CNSM permanently expressed its firm disagreement with diminishing the legal provisions regarding state supervision and control on the observance of legislative acts and other normative acts containing norms of labor law and has always advocated for removing SLI from the scope of Law No. 131/2012 and keeping the inspection system in an integrated format (with control attributions in the field of labor relations and occupational safety and health).

Limiting the control powers of the SLI on occupational safety and health at work and delegating these powers to 10 authorities, according to the ILO experts, is a unique model both in Europe and worldwide.

The CNSM appreciates that was taken into account, even if it is partial, the exposure of the Committee of Experts on the Application of ILO Conventions and Recommendations (CEACR) (of the International Labor Office), which found in the current inspection system a number of non-conformity of national normative acts.

Additionally, in its reports, the International Labor Office has exposed itself on the labor inspection system of the Republic of Moldova, namely: “the restrictions regarding the performance of unannounced controls, contained in Art.18 and 19 of the Law on State Control of entrepreneurial activity No.131 of 08.06.2012 are incompatible with the requirements stipulated in Art. 12, para. (1), (a) and (b) of ILO Convention No. 81/1947 and with the provisions of Art. 16, para. (1), (a) and (b) of ILO Convention No. 129”.

CNSM, repeatedly, during the years 2013-2020, addressed with approaches to the Government and Parliament of the Republic of Moldova for elimination of contradictions between national legislation and the provisions of the ILO Conventions and the restoration of SLI responsibilities and competences, according to the existing legal framework, until the adoption of Law No. 131/2012.

The concept of reform requires a process of change (for the better) that meets the challenges and requirements in the field of occupational safety and health. However, there was a situation of regression and aggravation in the field of occupational safety and health, where constitutional rights (Art. 43, para.2) of the employees at fair and satisfactory working conditions, in defense of the worker’s life, health, physical and mental integrity have been compromised, namely: increase of the number of accidents at work in 2019, which denotes a worrying situation characterized by systematic violations of occupational safety and health requirements at work.

Occupational safety and health requirements are of a preventive nature, their purpose being to prevent accidents at work. The (planned and unannounced) intervention of labor inspectors in the prevention of occupational risks in state-controlled entities gives rise to a degree of discipline in the organization and performance of workers’ protection activities.

Ex. Elena Carchilan, head of the Labor Inspectorate of Trade Unions.






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