The Portuguese Business Confederation (CIP) considers that the Government had a "correct position" when issuing a civil request for the drivers' strike, which meets on Tuesday the second day. To Jornal Económico, CIP President António Saraiva denies that workers are being forced to work on strike days and reminds that the minimum services are to be fulfilled.
“The Government has taken the right position [ao decretar requisição civil]. When one of the parties does not comply with the minimum services stipulated, it is natural for the State to take the necessary measures to ensure the public interest, ”he tells Jornal Económico António Saraiva.
The CIP leader argues that the government “should not be held hostage to cheap demagoguery” by trade union forces and underlines that, despite the strike being a right, minimum services must be ensured to ensure the smooth functioning of vital sectors of the economy. “Laws exist to be enforced, just as minimum services and civil requisition must be fulfilled,” he says.
The bosses defend the regulation of the exercise of the right to strike in order to guarantee the fundamental rights and expressly define the demarcation of legality. “It is desirable that the issue of minimum services be revisited. We are facing a law that has existed since 1975 and which has not yet been amended, ”notes the president of the CIP.
The question of the proportionality of the law is one of the issues that concerns employers. António Saraiva explains that in Spain a worker who does not fulfill the minimum services can be dismissed with just cause, but in Portugal this absence from work due to strike is considered as justified absence under the Labor Code.
António Saraiva also guarantees that CIP has no record that workers are being threatened or bribed to go on strike, as trade unions have argued, but there are cases among companies that are part of CIP. workers being threatened with reprisals for not striking. “There have been threats of strike pickets for not joining strikers,” he says.