The Free Trade Union Federation in Education, FSLE, one of ETUCE’s member organisations in Romania, reported great concerns about spillover and disruptive effects of the 21 legislative decrees adopted by the Turkish government on the Turkish education personnel regardless of their place of residence.

As a matter of fact, there are nine education institutions covering primary education, secondary education and higher education, wherein Turkish education personnel are employed. Aforementioned education institutions are financed by foundations and households.

FSLE reported that due to the incertitude in the political and social situation in Turkey, Romanian parents decided to renounce these education institutions, although the high level education performance of the students who used to be enrolled there.  All of these resulted in severe drops in incomes and, therefore, in dismissals of the Romanian education personnel, whereas Turkish education personnel are subjected to enormous psychological threats and pressure from the Turkish government and the Embassy of Turkey in Romania. More specifically, the embassy refuses to renew the Turkish citizens’ documents, or to issue the necessary documents in order to obtain employment licenses. Worse yet, family members of several education employees are arrested in Turkey but, since the Turkish government threatens their return to Romania, the pressure is increasing as Turkish education employees build their families in Romania too.

FSLE could not sit idle and took a step towards concrete actions. The education trade union is setting up an education trade union organising Turkish education personnel residing in Romania.  This organisation will be affiliated to FSLE so the union can legally defend their rights, represent them in court, before the Romanian government and the Turkish Embassy in Romania. On top of that, FSLE will organise a series of meetings with parents in order to give them an in-depth overview on the situation to retain students in schools.

FSLE is meeting representatives of the Turkish education personnel residing in Romania on 17 March 2017.

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