EPSU Solidarity letter to EPO staff


Dear Colleagues,

EPSU sends a solidarity letter to all the EPO staff,  for your demonstration in Munich today to highlight the gross infringement of employee and trade union rights at the European Patent Office.

EPSU has been following developments closely and recently wrote to members of the EPO Administrative Council urging them to address the issue, implement proper procedures and end this intimidation of union representatives. EPSU has also taken up the matter with the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, the Dutch Ministry for Economy and the Ambassadors of the EU Member States in a joint letter with the Dutch Trade Union Confederation FNV dated November 4th, 2015.

The issues addressed in that letter are still unresolved: continuous threats to the union representatives by the EPO President Mr Battistelli, violation of workers’ rights, and ignorance of a Dutch court ruling. The dismissal of a SUEPO representative in The Hague last month is further evidence to us that management is determined to destroy the union. This kind of behaviour is unacceptable for any administration on the territory of a European Union Member State. Many more EPO conflicts remain unsolved and the situation has degenerated to such an extent that the Dutch national Parliament decided to debate the scandals at the EPO, an action unheard of for any international organisation in Europe. We hope that your demonstration today will move the EPO Administrative Council to act and at the very least to respond to the ruling by the International Labour Office’s Administrative Tribunal that the EPO needs to appoint a properly constituted Appeals Committee, including a member of the Central Representation Committee, to deal with staff issues.

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