Corea, República de - South Korea found guilty of violating freedom of association for teachers and government employees

In June 2017 the ILO’s Committee on Freedom of Association officially expressed its view that South Korea was in breach of freedom of association principles, stating that “The legal provisions [of the Education Workers Union Act and the Government Employees Union Act] that deprive terminated workers of their right to be union members rob workers of their right to voluntarily enrol in organisations. As such, these constitute a violation of the principle of the freedom of association. Since the judiciary and government will continue to deny the legal status of the KTU and the KGEU as long as these legal provisions remain in place, we once again strongly urge the government to abolish these provisions”.

This view was reiterated in September when, during a visit to South Korea, ILO Director General Guy Ryder urged the Korean authorities to «quickly» address the legal status of South Korea’s outlawed teachers and public servants unions.
The Korean government outlawed the Korea Teachers and Education Workers Union (KTU) in 2013, as the union did not accept the government’s prohibition on fired teachers becoming members.

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