Bonum Certa Men Certa

EPO Central Staff Committee Warns That EPO President Illegally Changes the Rules to Remove the Rights of the Accused, Crush Dissent/Unions

Main court in Warsaw
Main court in Warsaw, photo by Michal Zacharzewski



Summary: The Rule of Law is no longer applicable in Eponia, where people can be dismissed or suspended based on mere allegations

THE EPO's attempts to silence Techrights have made it the de facto publication for almost everything deep inside Eponia (the stuff not announced to the outside world). We often get material from several sources simultaneously these days.



"I'm sure you'll get several copies of this one, but just to make sure," said one source, here it is.

Zentraler Personalausschuss Central Staff Committee Le Comité central du Personnel

11.12.2015 sc15452cp – 0.2.1/4.5/0.3.2

Amendment of the Service Regulations on suspension



Suspension of staff members is increasingly en vogue at the EPO. After staff representatives serving on the internal Appeals Committee and a member of the Boards of Appeal, the President of the Office decided to suspend on 18 November 2015 three elected staff representatives, also SUEPO executives. Not to mention “normal” employees suspended in less conspicuous investigative and disciplinary procedures.

"Suspension of staff members is increasingly en vogue at the EPO."The President put on the agenda of the GCC meeting scheduled on 09 December a proposal to delete a protecting clause from Article 95 ServRegs, just in time before the Administrative Council (AC) of 16/17 December 2015.

Pursuant to Article 95 ServRegs, the appointing authority may decide to suspend an employee if an alleged misconduct is so serious that it becomes incompatible with his/her continuing in service, for instance if continuation of service would be against the interests of the Office, would endanger the investigation process or even other employees. Suspension is not a disciplinary sanction: it is essentially an interim measure until the appointing authority decides on a disciplinary sanction following the completion of a statutory disciplinary procedure.

"The President put on the agenda of the GCC meeting scheduled on 09 December a proposal to delete a protecting clause from Article 95 ServRegs, just in time before the Administrative Council (AC) of 16/17 December 2015."The appointing authority may also decide to withhold part of the remuneration, up to half of the employee's basic salary. A salary reduction is warranted when the foreseeable disciplinary measure would have a financial effect, i.e. only in case of relegation in step, downgrading or dismissal1. Presently, the Service Regulations include a single provision protecting employees against excessively slow investigation and disciplinary procedures: if no final decision is given within four months from the date of suspension, the employee shall again receive his/her full remuneration2. Furthermore, in that case, the employee is entitled to reimbursement of the amount of remuneration withheld3.

Similar provisions are included in the Service Regulations of other International Organisations, either in the form of a fixed duration for a suspension (e.g. non-extendable six months in the EU regulations), or in a more flexible form, with an advance written statement setting out and justifying its duration (UN and WHO). However, after the abolition of Article 95(3) ServRegs the EPO would be the only international organisation that would have nothing in place. While any extension of _____ 1 Article 93 ServRegs 2 old Article 95(3) ServRegs, to be deleted soon 3 old Article 95(4) ServRegs, to be amended soon




any time limit over the presently four months would still be objectionable because it is not in the interest of staff, the abolition thereof is unacceptable because it is illegal: Article 6(1) of the European Convention of Human Rights states that everyone is entitled to a fair trial within a reasonable time (emphasis added).

The amended Article will have immediate effect on all suspensions ongoing on the date of its entry into force. The Administrative Council, assisted by the Office, has “house-banned” and suspended the member of the Boards of Appeal in December 2014, and is now being confronted with a decision of the Enlarged Board of Appeal (EBoA) not proposing his removal from office, as would be required by Article 23(1) EPC. The AC has asked once more the EBoA to propose removal from office and it is now tempted to buy time. Prolonging the suspension on a reduced salary is the President's selling argument for the AC to approve the amendment. However, the Council would be ill-advised to lose credit by approving such a drastic proposal.

"...the abolition thereof is unacceptable because it is illegal: Article 6(1) of the European Convention of Human Rights states that everyone is entitled to a fair trial within a reasonable time (emphasis added)."A “collateral” but possibly not completely undesired effect is that suspension of any EPO employee on a reduced salary may go on for an unlimited period of time, without justification and against ILO-AT case law4, with no incentive for the President or the AC to investigate speedily the alleged misconduct and decide in a reasonable time5. This de facto negates the interim character of a suspension and turns a salary reduction into a financial sanction. Such disproportionate decisions may in principle be challenged with the Administrative Tribunal but the review is limited due to their discretionary nature, and a judgment will be long to come.

Factually, suspension will become an additional punishment. Thus the present proposal of the President is neither in line with the Service Regulations nor with ILO-AT case law. It is a violation of the EPC, for much the same reason. It is also a violation of the European Convention of Human Rights. Therefore, the AC should dismiss the proposal.

"Thus the present proposal of the President is neither in line with the Service Regulations nor with ILO-AT case law. It is a violation of the EPC, for much the same reason."It should be noted that any damaging effect on any EPO employee this change of Article 95 ServRegs may in turn lead to court cases against Contracting States before the European Court of Human Rights. Therefore, this amendment will bring into disrepute the Organisation, the Office, as well as the respective Contracting States if they were to be convicted.

Finally, it is remarkable that President Battistelli comes with such a proposal for tougher punishment tools in what looks like a “suspension policy” against staff, although the AC gave him in March 2015 the clear mandate to engage into “social dialogue” with staff.

The Central Staff Committee _____ 4 see for instance Judgment No.2698 5 see for instance Judgment No.2698



This document is quite self explanatory and is written in plain (not legal) language/terms, so there is little that we can or need to add to it.

Recent Techrights' Posts

Bing Has Run Out of Time and Microsoft Might Dismantle It (Save a Financial Miracle)
How much more of investors' money is Microsoft willing to throw in the trash?
Microsoft is Dying in Africa
Based on the Central African Republic, which "is around the same size as France"
Microsoft Needs to be Banned From Contracts, Including Government Contracts, Not Just for Security Failings But for Criminal Negligence, Corruption, and Fatal Cover-ups
How many deaths will it take for Microsoft to face real, effective scrutiny rather than kid gloves treatment?
 
[Meme] Not Your Typical IRC Troll and Harasser
I say, let's punch nazis...
GNU/Linux's Journey in Qatar: From 0.1% to Over 3%
Windows is no longer an important contender there
Secret Contracts and Corpses
The media pretends it's just some generic "IT" issue, but it is not
Statement on Antisemitism in Our IRC Network and in Social Control Media
In an ideal world nobody would have to be banned from IRC
Gemini Links 14/06/2024: Ads vs. Content, Why Aliases Are Har
Links for the day
Vista 11 Has Fallen in Switzerland, a Country That is More Microsoft Friendly Than Most of Europe
GNU/Linux rose to its highest level there in almost half a decade
[Meme] Microsoft in Africa
Are you telling me Windows is now down to 1% 'market share' in some countries?
Management of the European Patent Office Misleads Staff on Views of the Office's Staff Committee
The EPO as a workplace very rapidly deteriorates
[Meme] Newer is Worse
"They say those are New Ways of Working (NWoW); New does not mean better, it is worse"
Links 14/06/2024: Violence, Famines, and Montana Has More Cows Than People
Links for the day
Microsoft Telecom Layoffs, Facebook Layoffs in Africa: A Month After Microsoft's Mass Layoffs in Lagos (Nigeria) Facebook/Meta Does the Same and Microsoft is Now Retreating and Quitting an Entire Sector! (Affirmed Networks and Metaswitch)
Disasters in the making for GAFAM. Money down the drain.
Papua New Guinea: GNU/Linux Growing, Windows Down Below 15%
it seems indisputable there's headway and momentum
"Planets" Cannot Replace Social Control Media, They're Very Much Akin to It (Censorship Hubs, Gatekeepers)
Don't be subjected to gaslighting; make your own OPML file
Topics That Truly Irritate and Consistently Infuriate the Microsofters (Whenever We Cover These)
Censoring uncomfortable information is a difficult activity that has its limits, even in Reddit
Honduras: Vista 11 Down, GNU/Linux Up
Valve sees GNU/Linux as bigger than Apple's MacOS
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Thursday, June 13, 2024
IRC logs for Thursday, June 13, 2024
LibrePlanet 2024 and the Lost Video/Audio of Talks
After the event was over someone informed us that due to technical issues they had lost (or failed to acquire) recordings of the talks
Choosing Between Options to Outsource to Evades the Best Solution (Self-Hosting)
Most users don't need this sort of complexity
IBM Layoffs at Kyndryl
This can soon spill over to Red Hat
Turkmenistan: GNU/Linux Leaps Past 5% This Month?
This is how statCounter sees it
Watch This Space
what matters most is not the volume or quantity of publications but their underlying depth and quality
Short Downtimes, Planned Maintenance
Hypervisor maintenance is planned
Links 13/06/2024: Ongoing Sharp Increases in Deaths, Mediterranean Diet Linked to 23% Lower Risk of Death in Women
Links for the day
Gemini Links 13/06/2024: Linuxing of the Dell Laptop and Deep Dive into the World of the OpenEarth Foundation
Links for the day
New Highs for Android in Haiti (Nearly 80%), Microsoft Windows at Only 4%
that's Android at another new high and very close to 80% (it now seems inevitable)
[Meme] How Stefano Maffulli (and Microsoft's Own OSI Insiders) Make Money
Milking what's left of the OSI by attacking its very mission - something that more people now recognise
Mobs Don't Get the Job Done (Mob Leaders Have Lost Credibility/Visibility, Job, or Both)
their demands weren't met
Montenegro: GNU/Linux "Proper" at Over 6%
Windows is down to record lows
Links 13/06/2024: Overpopulation Woes, Best Buy Lays Off More Employees
Links for the day
Nationwide Eventually Did Listen
Miles better than their original nonresponse
The Corruption of Open Source Initiative (OSI), a Front Group of Microsoft and GAFAM, Openwashing Proprietary Things and Even Plagiarism, GPL Violations
Stefano Maffulli (and Microsoft's staff that works with him) basically profits from anti-FOSS
In Malawi, Windows Down to 10%, GNU/Linux Growing
it's not a small country
[Meme] Featuritis
Newer is not always better
"AI" Tech Bubble
How much "hype quotient" does this whole "hey hi" (AI) thing have left in it?
Links 13/06/2024: Science, Politics, and Gemini
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, June 12, 2024
IRC logs for Wednesday, June 12, 2024
Gemini Links 12/06/2024: The Rodent Revolution and Adding Twisty Puzzles
Links for the day
Links 12/06/2024: Ukraine War Updates and Many Patents Being Subjected to Squashing Bounties
Links for the day
Ireland Last to Report Election Results
Daniel Pocock's involvement in Australian politics goes back to his university days
Never Sleeps, Never Slumbers
We're going to try to improve not just in quantity but also in quality
[Meme] The Purpose of Life is to Find a Desk
dogs have desks
EPO Has Gotten So Bad That Workers Need to Ask to be Allocated a Desk (at Work)
Wow!!!! An “allocated workplace”!!
Tux Machines Parties Going Well Do Far
Cross-posted from Tux Machines
In Many Countries, Both Large and Small, Vista 11 is Losing Market Share (Despite New PCs Coming Preloaded With It)
One need not even consider large nations in isolation
By "Going Public" the Raspberry Pi Ensures It'll No Longer Serve the Public
It'll be owned and controlled by whatever people wish to control it
Dave Wreski Also Plays the Bot Game (Chatbot) at LinuxSecurity to Fake 'Articles' About "Linux"
How much longer can they fool search engines (SEO) and readers?
[Meme] Indisputable Success
MICROSOFT buys shares of MICROSOFT
Links 12/06/2024: 'Hey Hi' (AI) Bubble Imploding Already, Danish Media Threatens to Sue OpenAI
Links for the day
Links 11/06/2024: Floods in Germany and Brazil, Political Violence
Links for the day
Gemini Links 12/06/2024: Sketching Plants, OpenBSD Pubnix
Links for the day
"2025 the year of Linux on the Desktop"
Charlie Stross quote
In Bahrain, Historically Low on GNU/Linux Adoption, Things Change for the Better
They have some people who understand Free software
Daniel Pocock Received Twice as Many Votes as Andreas Tille (Debian Project Leader After 2024 Election)
From the media yesterday...
Debian is Built by Hundreds of Volunteers and 524 Irish People Voted for Daniel Pocock
524 in that area went to the polling station to vote Daniel Pocock (Ind)
[Meme] RMS is 'Too Old', Says Company Run by a Person 5 Years His Junior (Ginni Rometty) and 10 Years His Junior (Arvind Krishna)
Never again?
[Meme] Women in Computer Science
Grace Hopper, Ada Lovelace etc.
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, June 11, 2024
IRC logs for Tuesday, June 11, 2024
Togo: GNU/Linux Growing Fast This Year, Now Measured at 6%
Sending Bill Gates with a suitcase to bribe African officials isn't enough anymore
Free Software Projects Need to Chase Away Men Who Attack Women Rather Than The Women Who Complain
A just society holds people accountable rather than covers up such blunders
Improving the Image of Women in Free Software by Hiring and Promoting the Proficient Ones
Million's shaman background isn't the problem, or even the superstitious ghost-chasing. The problem is that she has absolutely no background in Free software.
They Say Cash is King
People who value their freedom will pay with cash any time they can
'Team Microsoft' Wants to Leverage Our Popularity as a Weapon Against Us
In the past 2 days we published 64 articles and served over a million HTTP/S requests