REPRESENTATIVENESS OF TRADE UNIONS

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LUXEMBOURG
REPRÉSENTATIVITÉ DES SYNDICATS
REPRESENTATIVENESS OF TRADE UNIONS

In reserving the capacity to be a party to a collective agreement to the most representative trade union organizations at national level, Luxembourg law excludes sectoral and enterprise-level unions as well as employee representatives within the workplace. The concept of national representative status dates from the creation of a legal basis for collective bargaining in the Law of 12 June 1965 concerning collective agreements, which states two criteria for such status: a significant number of members, and independence. Since then, the monopoly of the large union organizations has given rise to considerable criticism and extensive litigation regarding the rights of newly formed or minority unions. Case-law on the matter has concluded, among other things, that the numerical criterion must be interpreted pragmatically, i.e. in relation to the number of employees in the particular constituency and their degree of unionization, and that the organization must be able to establish its capacity properly to protect the employment-related interests of the employees covered.

At present, three trade union confederations are recognized as possessing national representative status: the Independent Trade Union Confederation of Luxembourg (OGB-L), the Luxembourg Confederation of Christian Trade Unions (LCGB) and the Federation of Private-Sector Staffs/Independent Federation of Employees and Managers (FEP-FITC): see trade union . Legal disputes on the subject remain, and a degree of uncertainty therefore persists. It is, in reality, not so much a legal problem as a question of the influence and power of the various union organizations and the political groupings to which they are (or are not) linked.


Please note: the European industrial relations glossaries were compiled between 1991 and 2003 and are not updated. For current material see the European industrial relations dictionary.