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30 Mar 2020

Slovenia: Dismissal process initiated against Lidl union leader in midst of COVID-19 organizing, allegedly due to negligence; company responded

In early March 2020, Lidl Slovenia initiated the dismissal process for Tjasa Kozole, the founder of the union in the company and an employee and branch manager of nine years, allegedly for breaches of contractual obligations due to serious negligence. A public petition that gathered close to 4000 signatures was signed, condemning the dismissal of the woman union leader, who has been leading the union for a year and was recently trying to organize better protection for workers in the context of the spread of COVID-19. Trade Union of Workers in the trade sector of Slovenia stated that allegations against Tjasa were groundless and that the threat of dismissal was due to her active role in the trade union and her efforts to improve the working conditions of Lidl employees. Lidl Slovenia publicly dismissed the allegations made by them and other union headquarters and trade unions, insisting that the dismissal process is legal. Business & Human Rights Resource Centre wrote to Lidl headquarters and invited them to respond - they did not, but Lidl Slovenian did. Lidl Slovenia's response is available below.