The Public Defender reports that two facts that occurred in the run-up to the last local self-government elections were found to be politically discriminatory in labor relations.
According to the ombudsman’s office, employees of civil service organizations were fired in one case for being active in former Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia’s party (For Georgia) and in another for a family member associating with the same party.
The Gori Transport Agency Case
According to the factual circumstances of the first case, the applicant was dismissed from the position of Financial Manager of the Gori Municipality Transport Agency on 4 August 2021 due to the expiration of his contract.
According to the ombudsman, the applicant was convinced that the refusal to extend the contract was due to his brother’s close ties to the party For Georgia.
The Public Defender points out that the argument of termination of the relationship due to the expiration of the contract does not refute the presumption of discrimination:
“Especially considering that the respondent party did not dispute the applicant’s professionalism. However, the Agency did not provide information – which criteria, circumstances or factors the Director of the Agency takes into account when deciding whether to extend the contract or not; He also did not explain why the contract with the applicant was not extended. ”
The Zugdidi Case
In the second case, which was investigated by the Public Defender’s Office, the applicant was dismissed from the position of Administrator-Coordinator of the Zugdidi Student-Youth Palace due to the epidemiological situation.
According to the respondent, the switch to a remote mode of operation made it impossible to fulfill the obligations imposed on the applicant. The applicant pointed out that the employer had terminated his employment contract early only because of his activities related to the political party For Georgia.
“The respondent did not present any evidence that the abolition of the functions imposed on the applicant was indeed due to an epidemiological situation,” the ombudsman said.
“Also, the termination of the contract coincided with the period when the Student-Youth Palace should have been in an active phase of work since September – the beginning of the educational period. In addition, the Student-Youth Palace did not indicate why the contract was terminated only for the applicant due to the epidemiological situation,” the Public Defender wrote.
The ombudsman said in September 2021 that dozens of cases of possible discrimination on the basis of political views had been revealed in various public institutions.
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