Federación Rusa - Discrimination and persecution at “TAGRO” LLC (2011)

A local trade union of the Inter-regional Trade Union of Automobile Industry Workers (MPRA) was organised at the end of 2009 at “TAGRO” LLC in the city of Tver. After management was made aware of this as well as of the name of the Chair – Denis Litvinov – they started to put pressure on him and other employees. At a meeting organised by management, employees were forced to vote publicly against the union and its Chair and to write explanatory notes as to whether they were members of the union. Union member Andrey Kaznov, who was earlier dismissed from “Centrosvarmash” JSC in the city of Tver for his trade union activity, was forced to resign.

Litvinov was summoned twice to the Tver Regional Department for combating economic crimes of the Ministry of Internal Affaires and finally questioned at his workplace on the basis of an application by the Director of TAGRO LLC. Litvinov was accused of counterfeiting trade union documents, and a criminal investigation was initiated.

In July and August Litvinov was intimidated, harassed and threatened with physical attacks by the security service of TAGRO LLC. He was also put under surveillance. Litvinov was punished for disciplinary reasons a few times, and although the penalties were overturned by the Moscow district court in the city of Tver on 18 June, on 10 September he was dismissed. On 3 November the district court in Tver reinstated him, but after the reinstatement the discrimination continued: Litvinov was the only employee whose salary wasn’t increased in November 2010, and it was demanded that he write explanatory notes on supposed violations of the discipline. The Prosecutor’s office didn’t find any violations of Russian legislation in this regard.

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