European and international civil servants are today confronted with changes to their statutes which – officially justified by the economic crisis – are of such a nature as to compromise in the medium and long term the very competence and independence, which form the basis of the European and international civil service. In this context, the legal protection offered to them becomes a matter of utmost concern: it is important that an impartial judge can rule on the legality of statutory amendments.
Civil servants and officials of international organisations are subject, in the case of conflict with their employer over any matter concerning labour conditions, to an “internal” system of legal protection attributed to administrative tribunals or to appeals boards. This legal framework has sometimes proven questionable and lacking with respect to requirements of independence and impartiality, which are essential for proper administration of justice. An effort has been made to remedy these deficiencies both in terms of the procedures to follow and in terms of the protection of the rights of interested parties. This effort is most obvious within the European Union and the UN. By contrast, other European organisations (e.g. the Council of Europe) and international organisations (e.g. OECD and NATO) have maintained a legal system whose design dates to the era of the League of Nations. The current publication, which brings together written contributions to the symposium held in Luxembourg on April 1-2, 2011, contains an analysis of the different aspects of this evolution, presents them in a comparative perspective, and draws critical lessons. It is the first time that such a systematic and comprehensive review of these diverse questions has been undertaken.
Edited by Giovanni M. Palmieri
Chairman of the Committee of Staff Representatives of the Co-ordinated Organisations (CRP)
Chairman of the Staff Committee of the Council of Europe
The publication brings together the written contributions of Corine Caballero-Bourdot, Luigi Condorelli, Jean-Pierre Cuny, Chris de Cooker, Paul Dühr, Laurence C. Fauth, Stéphane Gervasoni, Matthew Happold, Petrus Kerstens, Horstpeter Kreppel, Laure Levi, Paul Mahoney, Louise Otis, Giovanni M. Palmieri, Hélène Pauliat, Marcel Piquemal, Eric H. Reiter, David Ruzié, Jean-Didier Sicault, Haris Tagaras, Georges Vandersanden and Sean Van Raepenbusch.