11.28.20

Nine Documents About the Financial Siege Against EPO Staff (Past, Present, and Future)

Posted in Europe, Patents at 8:43 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Wissen a. d. Sieg

Summary: Today we release dozens of pages of letters and documents (internal to Europe’s second-largest institution); they all focus on the betrayal and skulduggery, crushing staff in spite of what was originally promised (and what workers actually signed up for)

THIS site does not just “dump” documents. Careful attention is paid to what’s being published and the sensitivity of the material, e.g. who can get in trouble for it. Earlier this year we published debian-private archives from almost 2.5 decades ago, noting that there was a vote to release those in the name of transparency regardless (this never happened). Those are nowadays accessed a lot (25,000 times in the past 6 days).

“All international organisations/institutions need to meet very high standards.”Over the past few months there was intense argumentation inside the EPO about labour rights, partly and not exclusively because of Coronavirus/COVID-19. We mostly stayed out of it until this month (days ago there were finally campaigns underway, mostly financially motivated). EPO salaries are high, no doubt, but they’re proportional to what should be expected from 1) international organisations (sometimes requiring travel to another country with one’s whole family, which doesn’t speak the local language) and 2) the skills/education level (many have doctoral degrees and are former scholars).

Remember: an international organisation/institution without suitable staff (and skills/experience) cannot justify its very existence. All international organisations/institutions need to meet very high standards. In the absence of such standards, or if those standards aren’t met, diplomatic immunity too can be forfeited.

Ketrzyn CastleOver the course of this month we’ve published here some of the more recent and even the most up-to-date documents about the EPO‘s cuts, including the Salary Adjustment [sic] Procedure (SAP). The word “Adjustment” means reduction. “The new SAP will affect everyone: younger colleagues, older colleagues and pensioners. As with the career reform, the young colleagues will be hit hardest,” the Central Staff Committee noted.

We recognise the fact that the general public or European citizens aren’t as attached or ‘in tune’ to EPO accounting/finances, so more recent documents should suffice when it comes to explaining the current situation, which is untenable (resulting in digital protests like mass-mailing; there were strike plans prior to the pandemic).

Shared today, as scheduled, is a bunch of documents (raw and original form) about financial grievances of EPO staff and pensioners. In no particular order:

There’s another relatively new document about fixed-term contracts [PDF], which were introduced by Benoît Battistelli just as he was leaving (of course António Campinos didn’t overturn that). From the recent message sent by staff representatives:

On Fixed-term contracts (Part A): A short history on fixed-term contracts at the EPO

This series of publications is intended to provide a comprehensive background on the topic of fixed-term contracts at the EPO, and to serve as a reference for links to relevant publications and documentation. The current publication, part A, deals with the history and outlines the various forms of fixed-term contracts that have been used at the EPO.

The first publication is available here.

Sincerely yours,

The Central Staff Committee

Well, parts “B” onwards (there will be four in total, A-D) are on the way, but this one starts with the basics and explains how it all started when the EPO was still able to attract the talent it needs.

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