The Trade Union of crafts and entrepreneurship of Slovenia ( original; Sindikat obrti in podjetništva Slovenije; SOPS) was established in 1950 in Yugoslavia, when it was renamed from the prior Labour / Trade union of Regional Industries and Crafts.
Until the independence in 1991 it was organizationally linked with the other industry unions to the Trade Union Association Slovenia. After the independence it has become a member of the largest union association in the country »The Association of Free Trade Unions Slovenia« which consists of 22 members.
The union is an independent, non-compulsory and non-partisan interests association of employees in the Crafts and Entrepreneurship sector. With the resolution of the Ministry of work, family and social affairs it became an official representative of its sector. As a social partner it represents the interest of employees in the collective agreement on a national level. The first collective agreement in Slovenia (Yugoslavia at the time) was signed in 1971 and the Trade union of crafts and Entrepreneurship was a co-signee. This was the start of the Slovene crafts into a market economy. SOPS has always managed to do what its mission is. Since 1971 there was not a single day in which the labor wages and rights have not been determined and protected by a collective agreement. The employee in craft has not been left to the exclusive will of the employer but has always been protected by the agreement based on which if necessary the employee could protect his rights in the court of law if required. This of course is also true for the rights of the employers. Since 1971 the employers have known exactly what the minimal wages for crafts in Slovenia are, which has prevented unfair competition and guaranteed social peace without which is one of the foundations for prosperity in business as a general but especially in crafts and entrepreneurship. The past has thought us that both the employees and employers benefit from the collective agreement and a well-developed social dialogue.
Fortunately also the Trade Unions have to adapt to market forces because the competition in the market is relentless. This is why we endeavor to update our work and provide a richer content.
The constitutional right, which is defined in Article 76 of the Slovene Constitution, means the right of freedom of establishment and operation of trade unions and the participation within those organizations. Although this is the democratic legal basis of trade union activity and sounds nice on paper, in reality the real motives and the potential added social value is not manifested as much as we and especially employees who are our members would like. With our activities within the legal limitations we have to search for opportunities for additional income because employees do not have enough resources to finance the activities of the trade union to the extent necessary in order for it to fulfill its mission.
Our project references, covering the period from 2013 – :
In this project we were developing strategies for improving the competitiveness of the Slovene economy, promoting health with Small and Medium Enterprises and tackling the challenges regarding Cross- border services.
If you want a reliable project partner, please do not hesitate to contact us. Email address: email@example.com, Secretary General at Trade Union of Crafts and Entrepreneurship of Slovenia
Ana Čermelj, project manager
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