Advisory Council slates 80/20-regulation

The 80/20-regulation is against the equality principle, according to the Advisory Council (RvA) in their advice on the ‘initiative concept national regulation to enhance a fair employment chance for local workers’ submitted by the PS-party. In their advice, the RvA queries the concept, stating amongst others that it is ill-founded, requiring further research and even superfluous.

According to government party PS, the aim of the 80/20-regulation is to help more natives find a job. The party wants to achieve this by stating that at least 80 percent of the employees of every company on the island must be born locally. The RvA concludes that the latter is against the equality principle because a distinction is made between local and non-local workers. This does not only contravene the Constitution of the country Curaçao bur also the European Treaty for Protection of the Human Rights. Although the RvA states that in certain cases, one could deviate from the equality principle, they are of the opinion that this is not the case with the 80/20-regulation.

“When verifying if in a concrete case there is a question of an admissible distinction, one must judge whether the interest of the achieved aim countervails the interest (basic) right on equal treatment remains valid without restrictions and whether the objective could be realized in a different manner without or with less restriction of the basic right.” According to the RvA, from the Explanatory Memorandum with the concept the conclusion could be drawn that with local workers who have less chance on the local labor market, one actually means youngsters and personnel employed in the construction and horeca sector.

“With that, as the Council interprets the explanatory memorandum, one assumes there’s an unfavorable (competitive) position of the local worker due to the ample demand of and a preference for non-locals – including illegal workers residing on Curaçao.” The Council agrees with the idea that action is necessary to help local personnel get a job but the proposition mentioned in the enactment that employers prefer non-local employees, is ill founded. The latter requires more research and basis, according to the RvA. “This is indispensable according to the requirement of meticulous preparation of every enactment and rule.”

The RvA is of the opinion that enhancement of a fair chance on employment for local workers in the sense of the concept by correct application of existing laws, such as the National Regulation Entry and Deportation (LTU) and the National Regulation Foreign Workers (LAV), and by exercising proper control on observance, is protected adequately. “If in practice, local workers are not given a fair chance for employment (…) the appropriate measure is therefore to demand observance of the existing legislation and rules and not produce new legislation and rules, which after also require control on their observance.” Therefore, the Council concludes that in their opinion the concept ‘violates the equality principle and for this reason is not justifiable’.

23 May 2011

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