Project against violence and harassment in the workplace

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Marija HANZEVACKI
Independent Croatian Trade Unions (NHS)

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our work environment in many ways. Unfortunately, it has also shone a light on some ongoing problems in many workplaces.

While teleworking is still the norm in many countries, the Independent Road Workers' Trade Union (NCS) is preparing the return to "a better workplace", through the innovative project "Towards prevention and elimination of violence and harassment at workplaces in Croatia" (Norway Grants, 2014-2021 Social Dialogue - Decent Work)

The aim of the project is to strengthen the capacity of trade unions to participate in bipartite and tripartite social dialogue by establishing new, and improving existing, structures of worker representation in the domain of occupational health and safety and gender equality. By developing and  advocating implementation of standards in workplaces, the Union aims to eliminate violence and harassment, and generally improve working conditions.

Project activities include conducting research on the prevalence of violence and harassment in workplaces, to be carried out in cooperation with trade unions affiliated to the Independent Trade Unions of Croatia (NHS). The project provides education programmes for workers, members of trade unions, as well as representatives of employers on the subject of violence and harassment in the workplace.

Through education and union activities, the project will contribute to the creation of new structures of worker representation (e.g. women's committees and occupational safety representatives where such structures do not yet exist) and encourage the development of existing structures in trade unions.

By conducting a campaign on creating a working environment free of violence and harassment and by promoting measures to combat violence and harassment in the workplace, the aim is also to promote the importance of union activities, especially among women.