The government of Serbia introduced a draft law on Seasonal and Other Occasional Employment in Specific Business Activities (“Draft Law”) in 2021. The Center for Human Rights of the American Bar Association (“the Center”) provided a commentary on this draft in January 2022, raising concerns about the expansion of non-standard forms of employment that lack protections of labor rights and freedom of association, particularly impacting migrant workers. In August 2022, the government of Serbia released a revised draft law, titled “Law on Employment in Seasonal and Other Casual Jobs in Certain Industries” (“Revised Draft Law”); this updated commentary addresses the new revisions proposed by the Government of Serbia.
The Revised Draft Law attempts to address some of the concerns raised by various organizations; however, the Revised Draft Law remains overly broad. The limitations around the number of workers that can be hired by a single company and the duration of their engagement can be easily circumvented and abused and will likely be ineffective. The new provision in the Revised Draft Law recognizing the right to unionize, although commendable, may not be workable in practice, and more needs to be done to render the provision effective. Moreover, by doing away with oversight opportunities over the recruitment of foreign workers, the Revised Draft Law will likely lead to increased abuses of rights of migrant workers.