Journal of Accounting and Management Information Systems (JAMIS)

Peace and war in collective labor relations

Vol. 9, Nr. 3/2010 ,   p492..511


Keywords:   labor law, social peace, social dialogue, strike


While, from a certain point of view, social peaceconcept is wider than the mere absence of conflicts, from another point of viewsocial peace may be permanent, even when a conflict of interests is registered.Today, social dialogue has no longer an exclusive role of (re)establishing social peace. However, the mainobjective of social dialogue remains social peace, and the main source ofsocial peace remains social dialogue. The relation between employees andemployers is still developing between peace and war. The paper attempts toanalyze the concept of social peace, within the context of European SocialModel, and to identify the rather rigid Romanian rules that may prevent orpostpone the achievement of a balance between security and flexibility and of asustainable social peace. Indeed, unlike other legal systems, where thedistinction between conflicts of rights and conflicts of interests, albeittheoretically acknowledged, is not relevant in practice, this distinction isfundamental for the German-inspired Romanian system. Social peace is regardedas mandatory as long as a collective contract is in force, therefore any kind ofstrike or collective action is forbidden as long as no conflict of interestsarisen. Such a conflict is dependent on the very moment of negotiating a newcollective contract. The paper analyzes the Romanian solution and attempts toidentify the relation between such a legislative option and the establishing ofsocial peace. Is the mere prohibition of social actions during the existence ofcollective contract the way to achievement of social peace, or it should ratherbe a voluntary process? Moreover, the prohibition of strikes during theexistence of collective contracts is in fact in line with the ILO requirements?The answers are searched in the sensible relation between peace and war duringnowadays labor contracts. The author is trying to find practical solutions, inorder to harmonize the Romanian system to the general European approach.