Phycosocial risks in Russia
Conducted by Ekaterina Reznikova
1. Trade unionism
* General trends
* Most recent trends of the Russian labour movement (2008-2012) * Trade union positions
3.Psychosocial risks: reflection of society mood
4. Comparison of “stress” definition
5.Legal protection of psychosocial occupational risks
* Labour law
* Civil law
* Criminal law
8. Appendix 1 - interview
Unions are an integral part of the socio-political system of the society, one of the most important institution that regulates the relationship between employers and employees. It is a very reasonable statement for countries of former Soviet Union block, particularly for Russia, where the majority of employees feel themselves victims of the new capitalist order to the certain extent due to the country's integration into the global economy. Modern Russian labour legislation that meets market realities, provides only the bare minimum of social and labour guarantees and aims of employers and employees to ensure that labour relations are based on a contractual basis. Thus, the role of trade unions as the authorized representative of employees increases substantially. The unions are still the non-governmental organization with the very high number of membership which emcompass approximately 30 million members within Russia. This is about 45% of total employment in economic activities and working in enterprises of all forms of ownership. In Soviet times the right to safe working conditions traditionally associated primarily with the technical side of occupational safety and often is limited to compliance with safety regulations and health regulations. However, in the 70s of the XX century labour lawyer and scholar Tsepin A.I. wrote about the need to overcome the narrow approach of the determination of working conditions, to expand the employee's right to safe and healthy working conditions towards the inclusion of the need to create favourable aesthetic and psycho-physiological conditions on the workplace in the standards for health and safety conditions. Although, his point of view didn’t make an impact in the science of labour law, and one cannot find any mentioning of such a term extension in the Russian industrial relations science. Nowadays, one of the most important components of modern occupational health is to create a favourable psychological work environment or psychological climate. This is an emerging issue which implies the elimination of occupational stress, the prohibition of the use of emotional and physical abuse from management or colleagues, the prevention of the increase of injuries and diseases of nervous character. Such issues were previously assigned only to personnel management and labour discipline, now they are a part of problems of all the labour force. Noteworthy, that if to speak about Former Soviet Union countries, which are mostly united in the Commonwealth of Independent Countries (CIS) the model law "On the protection of labour" was created. It considers and is implied the regulation of the issues of moral hazard and occupational stress. Unfortunately, this draft is still a legal intention. This reports aims to describe the condition of Russian trade unionism relatively to phychosocial risks and legal ways of their protection along to show the available factual data about stress impact on work efficiency in Russia.
From the beginning of the Soviet period, trade unions have operated functions that, in many other countries, are carried out by state institutions. During Stalin’s reign (1930s), trade unions managed the social insurance budget, monitored labour protection and occupational safety and distributed free apartments. During the after-war period (1950s-60s), trade unions managed the majority of health centres, holiday facilities and other national...
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