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The Greek General Confederation of Labour (GSEE) has lodged a representation under Article 24 of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) constitution against the Hellenic Republic for failing to secure observance of the Labour Inspection Convention, 1947 (No.81).

Legislation recently introduced in Greece - Law 4808/2021 (Part V, Articles 102-125) - has introduced changes to the Labour Inspectorate (SEPE) that will lead to the removal of the Inspectorate from the competencies of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, the latter having been up to this point responsible for the basic administrative, organisational and operational aspects of the Inspectorate. The decision was taken without informing the GSEE.

The GSEE believes that the creation of a separate body, removed from the Ministry, will be detrimental to the protection of workers’ rights, and has thus lodged its request for representation. More specifically, the GSEE wishes to ensure the respect of the following principles that stem from Articles 4,5,11,19 and 20 of ILO Convention No. 81:

  • The principle of unity of the Labour Inspectorate and the need of a central authority, with supervisory and control responsibilities.
  • The principle of a uniform policy in the performance of Labour inspectors duties, which is achieved by compulsory, continuous and uninterrupted cooperation between the Inspectorate services and partnership with the other departments of the Ministry of Labour, the latter being the archetypal competent authority.
  • The principle of independence of the Labour Inspectorate from any government change and any external influence likely to affect its auditing and supervisory work.
  • The principle of competence and completeness of SEPE staff to effectively carry out the tasks and powers conferred upon it by the International Labour Convention 81.

The Governing Body of the ILO has yet to declare whether the request is receivable or not.