07.15.21

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EPO Staff Seeking Reparations After Unlawful Practices and a Decade of Abuse by EPO ‘Mafia’

Posted in Europe, Patents at 11:53 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Mind the gap between law and practice
How can they lecture us about obeying patent law when they break every law and violate constitutions without shame?

Summary: The Staff Union of the EPO (SUEPO) is making “COMPENSATION CLAIM” for some of the many abuses of corrupt EPO management, which is well overdue for some punishment; instead, as SUEPO warns, there’s risk that the credibility of the whole institution will collapse, including the complicit council’s (administered by what EPO staff calls “Mafia” because of its modus operandi)

THE staff union, or SUEPO Central to be precise (overseeing operations in all the branches and representing 3,000-4,000 members of EPO staff), is seeking compensation from EPO President Gap Campinos, who continues to protect Benoît Battistelli and cover up his crimes (which he further exploits and sometimes extends). While trafficking billions of euros from the EPO to some dodgy gambling account he has the audacity to lecture staff about a budget "gap".

Based on correspondence we saw, SUEPO takes it a step further in a number of directions right now. Yes, in parallel. The attack on labour rights is one thing; the attack on workers’ and pensioners’ compensation is another. To quote SUEPO: “In its 132nd session, the Administrative Tribunal of the International Labour Organization (ILOAT) ruled on the strike regulations of the EPO. The ILOAT expressed in several Judgments on exemplary complaints that effectively the entire legal framework intended to curb strikes in the EPO is unlawful.”

Suffice to say, quite frankly as usual, all the media was silent about it, but there are some good blog comments here (they also connect these EPO crimes to what’s happening with Team UPC).

“In this letter to Mr Campinos,” SUEPO writes, “we request him to execute the judgments and that accordingly Circular 347 is quashed ab initio. For the reason that all EPO staff was deprived of their right to strike with unjustified salary deductions, we request that the outcome of the judgments 4430, 4432, 4433, 4434, 4435 is applied to all.”

We showed the first page of each (last week).

“Finally,” SUEPO writes, “we urge Mr Campinos to propose to the Administrative Council the withdrawal of the decision CA/D 5/13 ex tunc. Such a decision in the upcoming meeting on 13 October 2021 could at least avoid another embarrassment for the Organisation in front of the Tribunal in Geneva.”

In order for European citizens to understand the corrupt forces pushing the UPC, here’s a letter that helps explain the total disregard for the law and constitutions.

14 July 2021
su21017cl – 0.2.1-0.3.1-5.1

Mr António Campinos
President of the European Patent Office
ISAR – Room 1081

OPEN LETTER

Reparation of the damage caused by the unlawful strike regulations

Dear Mr Campinos,

In its 132nd session, the Administrative Tribunal of the International Labour Organization (ILOAT) ruled on the strike regulations of the EPO. The ILOAT expressed in several Judgments on exemplary complaints that effectively the entire legal framework intended to curb strikes in the EPO is unlawful. The judges emphasised: It has long been recognised that staff of international organisations have a right to strike and that generally it is lawful to exercise that right.1 They ruled inter alia:2

• Circular No. 347 (Circular on Strikes) is set aside.
• “Go slow” and “work to rule” are legitimate forms of industrial action protected by the ordinary conception of the right to strike.
• Imposing a minimum of 10% of employees who may call for a strike violates the right to strike.
• The requirement that the vote be conducted by the Office violates the right to strike.
• The time limit placed on the duration of strike violates the right to strike.
• Being on strike must not be stigmatised as an unauthorised absence from work. A salary deduction on this basis is unlawful.
• The deduction of 1/20 of salary for each day a member of staff is on strike is considered punitive and thus not lawful.

In your first official meeting with SUEPO representatives on 5 December 2018, the above rules for strike were on the agenda. You confirmed your readiness for looking at them together with us with the intention of settling pending cases and finding a modus vivendi reflecting a staff union’s prerogative for organising a strike. But to date nothing in this respect has happened!

______
1 Judgment No. 4430, consideration 13
2 Judgments Nos. 4430, 4433, 4435


It is true that the regulations were introduced under your predecessor. However, you have to accept the consequences of continuing to entrust the fate of the EPO to the advisors of the time. Thus, the full responsibility for the serious loss of reputation caused for the EPO now lies solely with you.

What was once a model organisation for Europe has revealed itself as an institution that has breached the fundamental rights of its employees – for more than eight years.

ILOAT stated3: “Employees who strike by ceasing work are deploying a tool incidental to collective bargaining to place pressure on their employer, often in the context of a dispute about preserving or improving wages and working conditions, workplace safety, dismissals and freedom of association amongst other things. It is a tool employees have to redress the imbalance of power between them and their employer. Absent a right to strike, it is open to an employer to ignore entreaties by employees advanced collectively to consider, let alone respond to, their grievances about wages and working conditions etc.”

We request that you execute the judgments and that accordingly Circular 347 is quashed ab initio.

For the reason that all EPO staff was deprived of their right to strike with unjustified salary deductions, we request that the outcome of the judgments is applied to all. In particular, we request that,

1. Judgment 4430 be applied to all EPO staff who were deprived of their right to participate in the SUEPO strike of July 2013
2. Judgment 4433 be applied to all EPO staff who was considered on unauthorised absence for participating in the SUEPO strike of July 2013,
3. Judgments 4432 and 4434 be applied to all EPO staff active at the time of the events who were deprived of their right to vote in strike ballots
4. Judgment 4435 be applied to all EPO staff who had excessive strike deductions of 1/20th since 1 July 2013

In this respect, we request that the management reviews against strike deductions based on the salary slips of January 2021 are allowed immediately to avoid an increase in the workload of the appeals committee on a matter which has been ruled by the Tribunal already.

Finally, we urge you to propose to the Administrative Council the withdrawal of the decision sCA/D 5/13 ex tunc. Such a decision in the upcoming meeting on 13 October 2021 could at least avoid another embarrassment for the Organisation in front of the Tribunal in Geneva.

Yours sincerely,

Johannes Schaaf
Deputy Chairman of SUEPO Central

______
3 Judgment No. 4430

UPC propaganda mills of litigation firms (e.g. Managing ‘IP’) are doing a rally/marathon of manufactured/fake optimism, but guess what… there are challenges on the way and they know it. Their jingoism is part of the lobbying strategy, which is not entirely novel.

We invite EPO insiders to join our fight against the unjust, unlawful and unconstitutional UPC, which seeks to extend the same corrupt elements they see inside the Office to courts outside BoA. It’s a coup, it’s a long siege, and it targets the wallets of Europeans. Working for a “law firm” does not by definition imply you work to protect or uphold the law.

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