27 October 2020, Tuesday, 1:32
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The Reaction of State Employees to the ‘Robin Hood System’

The Reaction of State Employees to the ‘Robin Hood System’
Tatstsiana Seviarynets
Photo by racyja.com

Instead of the promised salary increase, everyone got much less.

From January 1, the authorities decided to calculate public sector salaries in a new way. The other day, public sector employees received their first payments for January and were dissatisfied. The new wage system was already called the "Robin Hood system," when small wages were increased at the expense of higher ones.

Charter97.org talked to the coordinator of the Belarusian Christian Democracy in Vitsebsk region and a teacher with many years' experience, Tatstsiana Seviarynets, about the situation of the Belarusian state employees.

- Instead of the promised salary increase it turned out that everybody got much less. For people it's a big loss and it's not known where to earn this money. As always, they count chicken before they're hatched.

And as for the "Robin Hood" system, it seems to me that the name of the famous hero has nothing to do with the situation. It contradicts his image.

As my daughters, who also teach, say, the payroll management itself motivates teachers to "creativity", to work beyond their working hours.

How does the system work? There is a certain rate, as it used to be. And then there is a bonus for various achievements, works, and contests. If there is nothing of this kind, then there's only what you have earned. According to the new rules, the employment contracts should be different as well. Now it turns out that many people got 300 rubles less. It's the failure of the administration which was not informed about the fund of these wages, or the criteria for certain payments. There should be a proper calculation of each point. I took part in the development of these criteria on the part of the trade unions and I know how much each point of the bonus takes.

Teachers have always been paid almost as much as unskilled workers. What just happened to the salaries is wrong. This is a failure of the administration. They have to take it responsibly. Each school has almost 100 employees who depend on the administration.

- Lukashenka personally demanded from the Ministry of Labor to prevent state employees from losing anything, but the opposite happened here.

- It's always like that. Somebody said: "Full pay means full pay." They have paid and are happy. Minsk schools have burst teachers into anger and demanded from Karpenka to show the declaration of income. The local administrators have not worked out well. They are responsible for this situation. They do not care about Lukashenka's threats. I'm getting more convinced that our system does not work at this intermediate level.

- There have been cases when one tried to persuade angry people to keep silent. How would you comment on these methods?

- When I'm the boss and I'm wrong about something, I must use all administrative instruments to nail those dissatisfied.

If people agree to be involved in such things - let them get a penny, they have no pride. Our system is as follows: you are dissatisfied with something, you will be punished and so on. When people condemn those who opposed unfair treatment, it is a "Soviet Union" attitude.

Speaking of salaries, this is a completely different story. A person who works with children must earn much more.

- How do you assess the situation with teachers in general?

- Under the current system of payment, if teachers stay idle and do only what they have to do, it will be a salary of 400-600 rubles. It's such a humiliation given the price growth.

Our Labour Ministry is uneducated and when they come up with something good, it's still a shame. Those who work hard, do not speak out, will earn. The rest will get pennies.

- Lukashenka once said that if we lose our teachers, "we will walk drunk and stupid". Isn't he following this direction?

- Superiors cannot prevent people from it. Given all the modern technologies, they are not capable of organizing work and payment. For them, a person is not a creator, but a screw that can be changed if one does not like something: "We can find someone else". They cannot treat people like individuals. This whole system should be removed together with Lukashenka for it not to stink.

- How can teachers boycott this policy? What can they do?

- They should not be afraid to take responsibility and begin to resent it. If you're afraid, you'll be the one who screams the loudest. We have to stifle the slave within, as Anton Chekhov said.