Orthodox Archdiocese of Oltenia (Lesser Wallachia) had opposed the plans for the formation of a union, the European Court of Human Rights has made a decision
Strasbourg (kath.net / CBA), the European Court of Human Rights declared the founding of an Orthodox priest in Romania for trade union legal. Such a ban violates the right to freedom of association, the judges ruled on Tuesday in Strasbourg.
In 2008, 35 members of clergy and lay employees of the Romanian Orthodox Church organized to establish a union. The Archdiocese of Oltenia (Lesser Wallachia) opposed the plans.
State agencies and courts initially recognized the union. On appeal, however, the foundation was prohibited by the court. The Romanian judges ruled the statutes of the Orthodox Church foresaw no unions.
The Human Rights Court has now decided that priests and laity who are employed by the Orthodox Church in Romania since their salaries were mainly from the state, they are subject to social insurance. The contracts could not therefore be classified as if they were entirely outside the civil law. This applies especially for the laity. Restrictions on trade union rights should exist only in very exceptional cases. The ban was disproportionate. The plaintiffs were awarded € 10,000 compensation.
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