On February 27. the 1st Congress continued its work, by listening and adopting the activity report covering the period since the founding congress (December 6. 2013), adopting the decisions of the Autonomous Trade Union Confederation (ASZSZ), and the National Confederation of Hungarian Trade Unions (MSZOSZ) to merge into it with legal succession. The congress also discussed and adopted the amended MaSZSZ Statutes. The delegates adopted the 2015-2019 Programme of the Hungarian Trade Union Confederation and elected the new office bearers of the confederation. The congress delegates expressed thanks and recognition to the outgoing president Péter Pataky and the outgoing vice-president László Varga for their outstanding work throughout the merger process.
László Kordás was elected president and Tamás Székely vice-president of MaSZSZ.
The second vice-president position and two of the places in the Presidium have been left open – indicating that the unification process has not been fully concludedsince at its congress on February 21. 2015 the Trade Union Coopeartion Forum (SZEF), the third founding member of MaSZSZ decided not to merge with legal succession into the new confederation, while maintaining its membership in MaSZSZ.
Péter Pataky stressed that the new confederation will act as legal successor of MSZOSZ and ASZSZ, its affiliates being the members of the two constituent confederations, underlying that the Hungarian Trade Union Confederation is the largest organization in the Hungarian trade union movement.
Lászlo Kordás, president stated that the confederation will undertake genuine and authentic interest representation and defence, will aim at taking more active role in public life, while its primary goal is to achieve that net minimum wage reach the value of the poverty line. At present there is more than 25% gap, which is untenable. Laszlo Kordás also stated: it is important that the integration continues.
Tamás Székely, vice-president stressed that workers face several challenges which need to be solved, and called for a meaningful social dialogue. MaSZSZ wants to be a "flagship" of interest reconciliation, whereby the new confederation is one of capable of action and will be able to assert workers interests.
Presidium of MaSZSZ – Hungarian Trade Union Confederation
László Kordás, MaSZSZ president (l.) and Tamás Székely, vice-president (r.)
Programme of the Hungarian Trade Union Confederation (2015-2019)
The founding of the Hungarian Trade Union Confederation opens a new chapter int he history of the Hungarian trade union movement. This historical moment provides an opportunity for the movement to restart.
Joinong our forces is based on core values to which we are firmly committed, such solidarity, equality, democracy, patriotism, Europism, the rule of law, and party neutrality.
The challenge facing the confederation is to create an organization that provides a dynamic and fast response capability. To meet this, we must implement the following tasks by the end of this program period:
- we give priority to strengthen the co-operation within and among sectors within the frames of the confederation;
- the Hungarian Trade Union Confederation become a service provider trade union in every sense, that promotes its affiliates to be able to provide integrated services; to be able to maintain direct contacts to their members, by a new information system; and through conscious financial management create the conditions for functioning independently of governments;
- next to the often limited-fledged social dialogue forums kept alive by the government, we aim at creating a system of alternative social dialogue, thus providing publicity to our demands, and proposals;
- we will be present at job fairs, in education, youth events (festivals) with active assistance presenting a new image of unions;
- we start a mentoring program where senior trade union colleagues share experiences supporting younger unionists;
- will elaborate the Equal Opportunity Program of the confederation, also assessing the ways how to introduce women's and youth quota in the frames of the organization;
- will establish think tanks, for being able to develop independent professional proposals, while we will bring together the fragmented experts’ base and make professional materials accessible in a single framework;
- In order to cater for education of new trade union officials and for the training of present union officers, the Hungarian Trade Union Confederation will establish its education center either independently or in cooperation with others.
Eradication of employees’ poverty (working poor) has the highest priority during the present programming period. Poverty with full time employment undermines faith in the work, reduce people's commitment to democracy, leads to radicalism and most importantly, increase the existential slipping, impoverishment, hopelessness. The fight against poverty should also be reflected in the unions operation (co-operation with non-governmental organizations, internal mutual funds, pension funds). We have to show an example towards the union membership, the government and the society.
The confederation will preserve and continue its international and regional affiliations, relations. It will aim to represent Hungarian workers’ interests at international level and to be involved in the shaping of European legislation related to workers interests, while strengthening the cooperation on expert level.
In the program of MaSZSZ our detailed policy objectives, demands are formulated. Bi-annually we will prepare the MaSZSZ country report to monitor the implementation of our objectives. We will give a real picture, based on realities and facts, thus providing a forum for wide-scale social discussions.
Budapest, 27. February 2015