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The Role of the Judiciary in Promoting Implementation of Labour Legislation


With support from the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung and in cooperation with the Palestinian Ministry of Labour (MoL) and High Judicial Council (HJC), the Institute of Law (IoL) organised on 19 November 2011 a seminar on the Role of the Judiciary in Promoting Implementation of Labour Legislation. The event is a component of the IoL-sponsored Labour Legislation Review project. In addition to Magistrate Court judges appointed to adjudicate labour cases, a number of labour inspectors from across Palestinian governorates took part in the seminar.

In her opening remarks, Mrs. Buthaynah Salem, Director General of the MoL Legal Affairs Directorate, welcomed the audience and highlighted the significant partnership between the MoL and IoL. Mrs. Salem highly appreciated the HJC’s decision on appointing 12 judges to examine labour disputes. Emphasising the need to review labour regulations from the Palestinian Judiciary’s perspective, Dr. Ghassan Faramand, IoL Director, also expressed thanks to Mr. Farid Jallad, HJC Chairman, and Dr. Ahmed Majdalani, Minister of Labour. Labour-related legal provisions should be upgraded on grounds of established judicial practice in Palestine. Dr. Faramand further highlighted the significance of this seminar as it would shed light on certain provisions under the Palestinian Labour Law in force.

Having welcomed the audience, His Excellency Hazem Idkeidik, Court of Appeals Justice and HJC Representative, introduced the HJC’s initiative to appoint judges to examine and settle labour disputes. Based on constant cooperation, respective MoL staff and judges need to discuss certain disputed provisions under the Labour Law in order to find solutions to current, outstanding problems. Judicial decisions on labour disputes in northern, central and southern governorates should also be consolidated.

In the ensuing discussion, participants addressed specialised labour justice. Mr. Mahmoud Alawneh presented a study developed by the IoL on Labour Justice in Palestine: Challenges and Opportunities. Mr. Abdul Karim Dharaghmeh, Director General of the MoL Inspection Directorate, made a presentation on major problems that face MoL in implementing labour regulations. Mr. Fayez Bkeirat, legal researcher at the IoL, elaborated on Article (41) under the Labour, which allows an employer to terminate an employment contract for technical reasons or due to a loss, provided that the MoL is duly notified.

In an open discussion about these issues, participants coincided that certain provisions under the Labour Law should be reviewed. The Law itself should be amended so that labour disputes can be adjudicated in a summary manner. Taking account of the urgent need to fully promote the concept of specialised labour justice, discussants unanimously agreed that delegation of judges to hear labour disputes is a step forward on the right path. To attain real results, discussants requested that participating judges review and comment on the study on the establishment of a specialised labour justice. Judges were also asked to submit relevant proposals to help enhance the Palestinian labour legal framework.