Mašina English Blog

The Industry of Leaving

Every year, thousands of medical workers leave Serbia and the surrounding Balkan countries for Germany, where hospital and retirement homes are more than willing to dish out hefty sums to intermediaries who bring in fresh employee material. It is a play on people looking for a better life, with plenty of money involved. But who are the key players?

Serbian Agency Employment Law: Will it help workers or put them in a disadvantage?

Domestic legislation has for the first time regulated the position of employees engaged through agencies, although such employment has existed for years. In what way and how much will the new law help agency workers? We discussed this with Jugoslav Ristić, president of the Confederation of Autonomous Trade Unions in Kragujevac and Mario Reljanović, an expert in labour law.

Laura Palmer from Small-Town Romania

At the end of July this year, 15-year-old Alexandra was killed in Caracal, southern Romania. The fact that the police, whom she had called three times, took nineteen hours to locate the call and arrive at the scene of the killing, caused shock and indignation across Romania, but also pointed to the state apparatuses’ mechanisms of subordination, and the catastrophic effect of capitalism on the outskirts of Europe.

Post of Serbia’s workers demand fairer wage distribution

A large number of Post of Serbia workers continue the work stoppage they started two days ago. The reason for dissatisfaction are low salaries and the management’s wage increase proposal, which many workers deem unfair. After the main postal center in Zemun was blocked on Monday night, a series of stoppages in postal units in many cities across Serbia followed. Delivery workers and drivers are most likely to suspend work, while counter clerks joined at different locations.

Three Draxelmaier’s workers fired because of the strike

Three workers of the Dräxlmaier factory in Zrenjanin, Serbia were fired , according to Masina’s sources. At the beginning of October workers in all three shifts discontinued work for an hour to protest against low wages and vague criteria for payroll calculation. Dräxlmaier suspended 32 workers on the account of strike. However, most suspensions have been lifted after the Labour inspectorate intervened.

Law violations in Dräxlmaier: from firing a new mother to suspending workers

Dräxlmaier, a German company which has been a long-time recipient of subsidies and the largest employer in the city of Zrenjanin in Serbia, implements poor working conditions and uses unclear criteria for calculating wages. In addition, this year the company illegally fired new mothers and suspended workers, causing the Labour inspectorate to initiate misdemeanour proceedings against Dräxlmaier, as Mašina’s investigation shows.

Who is Who on the European Right

What is the European nationalist right, when did it emerge and why is it on a steady course of success? Joachim Becker has some answers.

Historic buildings demolished in Subotica

Several historic buildings were demolished in an area listed as cultural heritage, in Braće Radić street in the city of Subotica. The Intermunicipal Institute for Protection of cultural monuments in Subotica had previously issued a permit to remove the buildings to a firm called DG Company.

Wolt and Glovo – innovations in bending labour rights

A traffic accident in Serbian capital Belgrade in which a Wolt bicycle courier got injured raised concerns about Wolt couriers’ working conditions and status. Are they employed and where, do they have health and social insurance, right to sick leave, vacations, how much do they earn…

Climate strike march held in Belgrade

Climate strike march took place in Belgrade last Friday under the slogans: “Wake up and join! The young demand changes!” A few hundred people, most of them young, gathered at the Terazijska česmafountain, demanding climate politics which will keep global warming within the acceptable limits. The gathering was organized by Fridays for Future Serbia and the Serbian Green Youth.

Minimum wage in Serbia far below the costs of dignified existence

The public will learn the official minimum wage for the next year no later than mid September. However, although the Social and Economic Council has just entered negotiations, it is already certain that the minimum wage will be set below the cost of the minimum consumer basket.

What could extending of working life to 70 years of age in Serbia bring?

If the initiative to change the Labour law passes, Serbia might extend working life to 70 years of age for those who wish to remain active. According to the daily newspaper Politika, the initiative has already been adopted by eminent experts at a session dedicated to the questions of contemporary legislative held in Budva city, Montenegro.

No one without a home! Protest against giving more authorisations to the private enforcement officers

Couple of hundred citizens gathered in front of the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade on May 26. The reasons for their dissatisfaction are the new authorisations given to private enforcement officers and the criminalisation of solidarity. The demand of the protest organised by the United Action Roof over One’s Head (Združena akcija Krov nad glavom) is to protect the right to have a home.

Serbian Right became part of the government in Vranje

The citizen group United for Vranje (Jedinstveni za Vranje) signed an agreement and thus became 22nd organisation that joined the Serbian Right, extreme right nationalist organisation. This made the organisation led by Miša Vacić part of the government in the south of Serbia.

The Law on Enforcement still directed against the most vulnerable

Stronger and more powerful creditors will continue to torture the most vulnerable members of the society, states the United Action Roof Over One’s Head (Združena akcija Krov nad glavom). Regarding the announced Amendments to the Law on Enforcement and Security activists will organise a protest on Sunday in Beolgrade.

Who is threatened by women? Gender-based violence in Serbia

Violence against women in Serbia is more and more frequent, in public space and in the workplace. In spite of the social atmosphere which further normalises male violence against women, women are not silent. They show resistance, raise their voices and provide examples to other women.

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