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Workplace Representation

France has a complex system of employee representation at workplace level, through both the unions and structures directly elected by the whole of the workforce. Where trade unions are present, the key figure will be the trade union delegate.

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European-level Representation

Most representatives in European bodies are chosen by joint meetings of employees’ representatives – trade unionists and works council members – where they exist. But board level representatives for a European Company are chosen in the same way as for a national company – through election by the employees.

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Trade Unions

ČMKOS is the dominant union confederation in the Czech Republic, although there are others. Overall around a sixth of all employees are union members.

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Health and Safety Representation

Elected “trusted representatives”, who then receive training in health and safety, are the key figures representing employees in the area of health and safety. They can be elected at companies with five employees or more, with more being elected at bigger workplaces. There are no joint employee/employer health and safety structures, although the trusted representatives, who are elected for three years, should participate with the employer in a range of health and safety activities.

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Health and Safety Representation

Employee representation on health and safety is provided through separately elected representatives, who in smaller companies act individually and in larger companies are part of a joint employer/employee committee. These representatives have the power to halt work if there is a direct threat to employees’ safety.

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Collective Bargaining

Company or organisational level bargaining is the most important level of bargaining in Latvia, with relatively few industry-level agreements. Despite this, collective bargaining coverage, according to the official figures, is relatively high, at 34% of all employees, although the union estimate is much lower, at 16%. There are no negotiations for large parts of the private sector.

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Financial Participation

Employee financial participation in Estonia is present mainly in the form of employee ownership and the activities of cooperatives. The importance of employee ownership has been in decline since the beginning of the 1990s, when for a short time employee ownership played an important role in the privatization process. Profit-sharing schemes are now relatively widespread (above the European average).

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European-level Representation

Estonian members of European bodies linked with European Works Councils and the European Company are normally elected by the general meeting of employees. The arrangements are slightly different when there are several Estonian companies involved.

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Board-level Representation

There is no legislation on employee representation at board level in Latvia.

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Key Facts

Population64,716,000
Collective Bargaining Coverage 98%
Proportion of Employees in Unions 8%
Principal Level of Collective Bargaining

industry and company

Workplace Representation

union and works council/employee delegates – but union normally dominates if present

Board-level Representation

yes: state-owned and private companies

Company Board Structure

monistic or dualistic (choice)

Sources: see individual country sections; where a range of figures has been quoted, the lower number has been taken