BAG weakens the union pluralism of the Federal Republic and devalues the basic right to freedom of association – DHV examines the filing of the constitutional complaint and, if necessary, the going to the ECJ!
After more than 125 years of existence, the German trade union DHV has been denied tariff eligibility by the German Federal Labour Court (Bundesarbeitsgericht – BAG). The legal dispute went through all labour court instances since December 2013 and was even referred back by the BAG to the Hamburg State Labour Court (Landesarbeitsgericht – LAG) in 2018. With the incomprehensible, from the DHV’s point of view constitutionally not understandable decision, the applicants of this procedure – Verdi, IG Metall, NGG and the states of Berlin and North Rhine-Westphalia – have for now gotten through with their attempt to ban from competition an unwelcome trade union, which is based on content and on the Christian social doctrine from collective bargaining in the Federal Republic.
The only question in this case was whether the DHV met the requirements of the BAG power of law of the 1960s – but the world of work has changed fundamentally since then! The successful trade union work, done by numerous members, which the DHV presented extensively and which the applicants never contested, played no role at all – as did the fact that the DGB trade unions are now organized in barely more than 10% of the sectors and are therefore hardly powerful anymore! The trade unions Verdi and NGG alone have lost over 20% of their members since the 2000s!
“We are sad and outraged by this slap in the face of over 70,000 DHV members who work daily for the well-being of employees in companies, as works / personnel / supervisory boards, in collective bargaining commissions and higher-level social honorary offices!” said the federal chairman of the DHV Henning Röders in a first comment on the decision.
The DHV examines the filing of the constitutional complaint and, if necessary, the course towards the ECJ (European Court of Justice)! The decision of the Federal Labour Court not only deprives the DHV organization of its tariff capacity, which interferes in an unjustified manner with its basic right to work as an employee coalition, granted under Article 9 Paragraph 3 of the Basic Law. Also the more than 70,000 DHV members, who are involved in a variety of ways in their DHV union, are unjustifiably restricted in their basic right to work in their DHV union!
After the decision was published, a member of the DHV is quoted saying: “Now we are a big step further on the way to a new FDGB (former Eastern German trade union federation) in Germany!”
Even as a union that is not subject to tariffs, the DHV will fight for the rights of its members and make its contribution to shaping working conditions in Germany. This is what we stand for as one of the oldest trade unions in Germany!