Several options have been considered regarding the introduction of a ban on working on Sundays at retail facilities.
A joint stakeholder meeting is scheduled in February, where all proposals will be analysed and possibly a final decision will be made, the Association of Free and Independent Trade Unions (ASNS) points out.
The president of the Association, Ranka Savic, says that foreign and domestic retailers, trade unions and government representatives will attend the meeting to discuss all the proposed models.
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“The representatives of the Ministry of Economy have told us that if the surveys conducted indicate that retailers are strongly opposed to our idea, then other options will have to be considered; for example, a ban on working on Sundays in the first or last week of the month, which would be the first step to accept a ban on working every Sunday afterwards,” Savic adds.
There are also proposals to limit working hours on Sundays, perhaps until 11 a.m. Although, the Ministry of Economy has shown understanding and supports the idea, meetings with domestic and foreign retail chains, suppliers, consumers and the non-governmental sector are still needed to further discuss the initiative.
“The union won’t give up on this idea…We wouldn’t be happy if the ban is only applicable to one or two Sundays a month, but also there’s still no reason to reject it,” says Savic.
The trade union association also drew attention to the low wages of the workers in retail, close to 200,00 of them, many of whom have salaries of about 30,000 dinars per month, practically equal to the minimum wage in Serbia.
“A significant problem is the shortage of labour and unpaid overtime. In addition, Sunday work is not paid separately because employers consider it like any other working day,” Savic concluded.
This post is also available in: Italiano