Costa Rica Supreme Court strikes down labor reform law, upholding ban on strikes that shut down essential public services

By Zach Dyer

Business leaders celebrated a court decision Friday that they say guarantees Costa Rica’s public hospitals, ports and electricity grid will continue to function even if public sector workers are involved in a labor dispute.

The ruling, from the Constitutional Chamber of Costa Rica’s Supreme Court, is the latest chapter in a legislative saga spanning two presidencies. At issue is a comprehensive labor law which, among numerous other provisions, would allow workers providing essential public services to go on strike.

The court, also known as Sala IV, struck down a December 2014 decision by President Luis Guillermo Solís to lift a prior veto of the law. The original veto came from ex-President Laura Chinchilla (2010-2014) in 2012.

Costa Rican law allows the president to reverse a former president’s veto under certain circumstances, but Sala IV ruled against Solís’ veto-lifting in this case on a technicality.

When Solís announced last year his intention to let the law go into force, he said the country’s labor laws were obsolete and that the urgency to update them was greater than the threat of strikes that could paralyze essential public services. These services include hospitals, emergency and police services, port operations, telecommunications, water and energy distribution, among others.

The reform dealt with a wide range of labor issues that even … continue reading

Via:: Tico Times