Cases where people contact us about unpaid wages end in different ways. Sometimes they become an open dispute (mostly successful), sometimes the issue is resolved before open dispute, and sometimes the issue is not resolved at all or communication from the workers does not continue. The following article covers almost all the mentioned scenarios that we encountered since last year's International Week Against Unpaid Wages in various cities across Slovakia It is worth noting that most them were related to hospitality and almost all cases affected women.
Unpaid worker and damages claimed by boss in a small business
This problem in a hospitality sector involved a boss who refused to pay overtime to a worker and was claiming damages, even though the contract did not contain a material liability clause and the liability was not actually on the worker’s side. We arranged a meeting with the worker to explain the options as to how to proceed and the worker suggested that she would try to deal with the boss one last time nicely before she considers entering a dispute with our union. She was lucky and the problem was resolved.
Unpaid wages and health insurance debt
Another case involved a woman working in a hospitality, too. After her employment ended, the owner failed to pay her the agreed wages and also caused her health insurance debt. The problem has not yet been resolved.
Immediate dismissal without notice in a language school
We were contacted by a worker who was dismissed from a language school without notice. After our follow-up questions, no further communication from the worker was received.
Unpaid wages in a manufacturing company
In this case, two female workers dealt with wages owed by filing a criminal complaint. They also contacted our union, stating that they would wait until the investigation was completed before taking any joint action.
Unpaid wages and bossing in the workplace
Kristína worked in hospitality in Bardejov. Already at her first payday she encountered her employer’s unwillingness to pay her the agreed amount for her work. However, she was determined to fight for her pay and eventually succeeded to the full. She was in contact with our union, and together we negotiated what to do to make the situation work out in her favour, and we also considered starting a dispute. In the end, however, this was not necessary, as she was able to succeed quite quickly. In the following article we combined Kristína’s notes from the most critical days and our notes: https://www.priamaakcia.sk/-Vedela-som-ze-ak-bude-sef-robit-problemy-neb... (in Slovak only).
Another worker from hospitality sector in Bratislava did not receive her tips in spite of the owner’s promise. She contacted him several times by text and phone. We communicated with the worker and encouraged her to persist, which eventually paid off and she received the money. More info and also helpful tips: https://www.priamaakcia.sk/Gastro-firma-mi-nechce-vyplatit-tringelt-co-s... (in Slovak only).
Priama Akcia (IWA-AIT Slovakia)