Implementation of the law on protection from harassment at the workplace

The harmonization of our legislation with the European directives on discrimination and equal treatment of both men and women during recruitment and at the workplace resulted in regulation of the phenomenon of harassment at the workplace. This phenomenon was regulated for the first time in 20051 with the provisions of the Law on Labor Relations, which defined the phenomena of psychological harassment (mobbing) and sexual harassment at the workplace. After the initial regulation for harassment at the workplace in the Law on Labor Relations, in 2009 the law was supplemented with provisions2 that only refer to psychological harassment at the workplace (mobbing). The small number of foreseen provisions in the labor legislation that were introduced in 2005 and 2009 did not include a precisely established procedure and mechanisms for prevention and tackling this type of cases. This conclusion was verified by the findings and recommendations from conducted research3 by ESE with regard to these matters that pointed out the need for regulation of this phenomenon in a special law.

The regulation of this phenomenon in a special law in 2013 represents the first step to establish the base for prevention and adequate processing of cases of harassment at the workplace. However, its further adequate implementation is essential for proper and comprehensive tackling and suppression of the phenomenon of harassment at the workplace.

Therefore, as continuation of the previous action we have taken to ensure systematic monitoring of the phenomenon of harassment at the workplace, we conducted the analysis about the level of implementation of the Law on Harassment at the Workplace. The conducted analysis points out the problems and challenges which are faced by the workers and employers during the implementation of the law and also includes recommendations to overcome them.

The findings from this analysis can be used for taking further action in this area, i.e. to alarm and point out to the competent institutions about the need for implementation of the law in practice, as well as stimulation and encouragement of employees to utilize the law and the legal possibilities for protection in cases of harassment at the workplace.

Implementation of the law on protection from harassment at the workplace