Turkish Workers Law is in developing state and relating legislation leaves many doubts in minds weather it indeed meets the needs of Turkish workers’ rights. Every year countless workplace related accidents happen resulting in loss of lives of many workers and the ruling party seems to express condolences to the families and continue disregard towards safety regulations of the workplace.

Turkish Model

General principles of Turkish Work Law is codified within 4857 Work Code and 5510 Social Security and General Health Insurance Code. Both of these regulations are stipulated as supreme norms and have an additional enforcement fulcrum within 2709 Turkish Constitution of 1982 Artt. 12, 18, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 60, 61, 62, 65, 90.

Turkish employers additionally contract with Insurance Companies for Employers’ Economic Liability Insurance for additional protection against action suites. Employers educate workers on health regulations and encompass the environment of the work space within the limits of safety regulations set within supreme provisions of the aforementioned codes.

European Model

If we take a look on leading liberal systems that ensure effective protection for workers we see ourselves comparing Turkey to European Countries. European Union has a set of rules that are considered supreme law in contrast to national legislation of each Member State (MS). These rules consist of written legislation adopted and signed by each MS representative in the European Council (EC) and enforced by European Parliament (EP); and as a second pillar, court orders set generally applicable European rules and principles of Law that meet present needs. Workers’ rights are codified in Treaty of European Union (TEU) as well as Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). This means that EC sees these types of rights as fundamental human rights which are protected and enforced by the Courts of EU.

In this regard MSs don’t have any authority in this sphere of law in codification of national legislation because Art. 19 TEU stipulates a strict prohibition

“Member States shall provide remedies sufficient to ensure effective legal protection in the fields covered by Union law.

Moreover “The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has developed the requirement of effectiveness of EU law as a general legal principle, which includes an obligation on national courts to ensure they give adequate effect to EU law in cases arising before them.”  Therefore workers’ rights are protected

Craig P. Burca de G., “EU LAW Text, Cases, and Materials”, The Application of EU Law: Remedies in National Courts p. 218 ¶ i


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