Instruction No. 22/2012 (03.01.) of the Secretary General
of the Office of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights
on the Equal Opportunities Regulation of the Office of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights
The Secretary General of the Office of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights – in agreement with the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights and the Deputy Commissioners – (hereinafter referred to together as ‘persons exercising employer's rights') on the basis of Section 63(4) of Act CXXV of 2003 on Equal Treatment and on the Promotion of Equal Opportunities (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Opportunities Act') and of Section 70/A of Act XXII of 1992 on the Labour Code (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Labour Code'), in order to monitor and improve the employment position of more disadvantaged groups of workers, hereby determines the Equal Opportunities Regulation of the Office of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Regulation') as follows:
The Regulation covers all workers of the Office of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Office').
1. General objectives and ethical principles
1.1. In order to promote a family-friendly workplace and to reduce or put an end to the disadvantageous situation of the workers who are:
- older than 40 years,
- living with a disability, having a reduced working capacity or a chronic illness,
- having small children, several children or raising their child/ren alone,
- raising a permanently ill or disabled child,
- caring for an ill, disabled or old relative, or
- commuting every day from another settlement,
the Office undertakes the obligation to take measures as an employer to support those concerned.
Over and above the fact that the Office complies with the obligations laid down in the above legal rules, the Equal Opportunities Regulation aims not only at the reduction of objective differences which exist between workers, such as sex, age, family and health status, residence, social situation etc., but by way of different benefits and services to create and maintain the conditions for effective and creative work. Taking into consideration the circumstances of those who raise children, care for other persons, as well as the age of workers and the circumstances which create a disadvantageous situation, the Office will elaborate such positive, fair and flexible measures which will facilitate the improvement of working conditions. All this forms part, on the one hand, of the development of a spirit that is appropriate for the tasks of the institution, and, on the other hand, of the development of communities at work. The Office helps to compensate for social disadvantages with the provision of various financial and in-kind supports determined in the Public Service Regulation.
1.2. The persons exercising employer's rights undertake the obligation to enforce the requirement of equal treatment and within this framework to employ primarily the means of prevention. This includes the following: the drafting of applications and public notices of vacancy, the origin of employment relationships, and during the time of the employment relationship the determination of salaries, allowances, further training, and other means and methods constituting an incentive, the specification of the criteria for performance evaluation, the transfer, the other issues related to employment relationships, and the termination of the employment relationship.
1.3. The application of the principle of equal treatment cannot put an end to all inequalities which the workers in the Office may encounter in the course of their employment, consequently, the employer must respect the human values, dignity and individuality of the workers. Taking into consideration the interests of the workers and the Office, and reconciling these interests, one has to create such working conditions which contribute to the preservation and strengthening of these fundamental values.
1.4. In the interest of realising the objectives laid down in point 1.1. of the Regulation, i.e. the equality of opportunities of groups in a disadvantageous situation, the persons of the Office exercising employer's rights undertake the obligation to examine, together with the workers, the possibility of applying further fair and flexible measures and benefits in accordance with the current economic and budgetary situation of the Office.
2. Assessment of the situation, registration, and data processing
2.1. Part of the data to be used in respect of the equal opportunities of workers such as data on sex, age, child raising, residence, are already available in the human resources data base.
2.2. The processing of other data relating to nationality, caring for ill persons, reduced functional capacity etc. is done on the basis of voluntary supply of data by those concerned, separated from the human resources data base, and the two may not be connected.
2.3. The persons exercising employer's rights in the Office declare that, in the course of collecting and processing the data necessary for the implementation of the Equal Opportunities Regulation, they will comply with the provisions of Act CXII of 2011 on the Right to Informational Self-Determination and Freedom of Information (hereinafter referred to as ‘Informational Self-Determination Act') and the respect of the personality rights of the persons concerned.
2.4. According to Section 70/A(3) of the Labour Code, the special personal data necessary for the preparation of the equal opportunities plan may be processed on the basis of a voluntary supply of data of the persons concerned, until the last day of the period affected by the equal opportunities plan.
3. The Equal Opportunities Committee and the official responsible for equal opportunities
3.1. In order to comply with equal treatment and promote equal opportunities, the persons exercising employer's rights initiate the setting up of a Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee which examines the implementation of the Equal Opportunities Regulation, makes proposals for the enlargement of the commitments and benefits, and prepares the decisions of the Secretary General in connection with the making use of social allowances.
The Committee consists of one delegated member of each autonomous organisational unit of the Office and one delegated member of the secretariats of the Deputy Commissioners (nine members in all) who represent as far as possible the protected groups listed in point 1.1. of the Regulation. The Committee meets at least once a year, and its work is assisted by an official responsible for equal opportunities appointed by the persons exercising employer's rights.
3.2. The Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee elects an official responsible for equal opportunities from among its members whose relevant mandate must be included in his or her job description besides his or her other responsibilities. The official must perform his or her tasks full time.
3.2.1. After his or her appointment, the Secretary General informs the workers of the Office on the person of the official responsible for equal opportunities.
3.2.2. The tasks of the official responsible for equal opportunities:
a. receives the complaints falling within the competence of the Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee and forwards them to the Committee;
b.monitors the implementation of the Equal Opportunities Regulation and draws up a report thereon by 30 November 2012. This report must be made available for all workers of the Office;
c. prepares the Equal Opportunities Regulation for the next period and conducts consultations thereon with leading officials exercising employer's rights and the members of the Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee. The deadline for the submission of the agreed proposal is 10 December 2012. If a commitment affects the drafting of the budget of the Office, the proposal for making such commitment must be submitted during the period of budgetary planning, but by 31 August of the year proceeding the budget year at the latest.
In the period of making the report and drawing up the new Equal Opportunities Regulation and in order to perform his or her tasks, the official responsible for equal opportunities may, to the necessary extent, be relieved of his or her other tasks.
4. Commitments and benefits guaranteed for the workers of the Office
4.1. Equal opportunities or young career-starters
4.1.1. Young career-starters beginning work in the Office will during their first year receive the assistance of a mentor who has legal and professional experience in the given organisational unit and has a good knowledge of the ombudsman institution; the mentor will be designated by the head of the organisational unit. The persons exercising employer's rights support the professional/further training and scientific activity of young career-starters.
4.1.2. The children of the workers of the Office will have an advantage when making use of a traineeship or of possibilities of consultation on their thesis.
4.2. Equality of opportunities for workers approaching retirement age
In order to facilitate the transition to pensioner status, on request, the Office gives individual counselling for workers approaching pensionable age on the possibilities of retiring. The professional competence and experience of persons approaching retirement is used to a maximum extent within the framework of mentoring.
4.3. Equality of opportunities for workers with families and children
4.3.1. In the interest of harmonising family and work obligations an eight-hour reduction of working time per month may be given to workers who are raising two or more children under 14 years or raising alone at least one child under 14, raising a permanently ill or disabled child or are caring for an ill, disabled or elderly parent. A four-hour reduction of working time per month may be given to workers who are raising at least one child under 14. The benefit of this working time reduction must be made use of in a way that it should not prevent the worker from appropriately performing his or her tasks at work.
4.3.2. When authorising the annual paid leave of workers who are raising children under 14 years of age, the employer must take account of the dates fixed by the childcare and educational institutions as vacation time.
4.3.3. Workers on maternity leave or parental leave are workers of the Office with equal rights, and during such periods of leave the Office keeps regular contact with them, so in particular they receive information on professional events and twice a year those exercising employer's rights give them the opportunity to participate in events in the Office together with their children.
4.4. The protection of the health of workers and support for sports activities
4.4.1. For workers above the age of 40 years or with a reduced functional capacity or with a disability, 4 hours of healthcare and illness prevention working time benefit may be granted for them to make use of services offered in healthcare and sports facilities. The benefits must be used so as not to prevent the appropriate performance of the tasks of the worker concerned.
4.4.2. For the prevention of illnesses originating from a sedentary job and lack of exercise, the Office supports the use of fitness and sports possibilities for workers at a reduced tariff (for example the use of nearby school or other sports halls or swimming pools, recreations cards etc.). The workers of the Office will found their own Sports Club (SC), which will provide a framework for participating in grassroots sports events.
4.4.3. In the interest of preventing heart and cardiovascular diseases, cancer and locomotive diseases of workers, where possible, the Office ensures healthcare providing special screening tests and counselling (for example at a nearby healthcare provider). This does not affect the mandatory provision of health (occupational medical) services at work the employer is obliged to provide.
4.4.4. Workers suffering from chronic illnesses and under regular treatment may, if this is justified on the basis of a certificate from the general practitioner, benefit of such treatment during part of their work time. The benefits must be used so as not to prevent the appropriate performance of the tasks of the worker concerned.
4.4.5. On the basis of individual assessment, homeworking may be authorised whereby workers falling into one or more of the following categories will have preferential treatment: workers over 40 years of age, workers with several children or expecting a child, workers commuting from another settlement, as well as workers living with a disability.
4.5. Other measures promoting the equality of opportunities of workers
4.5.1. During the planning of the next year's budget, the budgetary resources necessary for development measures ensuring healthy and safe working conditions, identified by the Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee by means of the method of eco-mapping as measures that cannot be postponed, must be planned and earmarked by the Office. Moreover, it strives to ensure that the working conditions (office furniture, placing of inscriptions, settings of computer programmes) of workers with a reduced functional capacity or with a disability be as adequate to their health condition as possible.
4.5.2. In order to reduce the average burden of those commuting daily from other settlements, the occasional requests of these workers, relating to the traffic conditions between the work place and the given settlement for the scheduling of work time must be taken into consideration.
4.5.3. The Office ensures for its workers the possibility of life-time learning, accessible with equal opportunities, in accordance with their needs for development and further training.
4.6. Making use of working time and other benefits
4.6.1. One should make use of the working time benefits provided for in chapter 4. in such a way that they, in conformity with the Public Service Regulation, should count towards the 40 hours working time framework. The registration of the working time benefits is done, in accordance with the data protection principles laid down in chapter 2, by the heads of the autonomous organisational units and of the secretariats of the Deputy Commissioners.
4.6.2. The registration of the other benefits is done, in accordance with the data protection principles laid down in chapter 2, by the heads of the autonomous organisational units and of the secretariats of the Deputy Commissioners.
5. Ensuring the possibility of filing complaints
5.1. In case of a violation of equal treatment, workers of the Office can turn to the Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee prior to starting the proceedings laid down in Act CXXV of 2003 on Equal Treatment and on the Promotion of Equal Opportunities. After giving an opinion thereon, the Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee, within seven days of receipt, forwards the complaint, together with its opinion, to the persons exercising the employer's rights.
5.2. The persons exercising the employer's rights examine the complaint and inform the Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee and the worker on the outcome of the examination.
5.3. The filing of a complaint does not restrict the worker's right to use the available lawful means to institute legal proceedings.
5.4. No worker may suffer any disadvantage from the employer for filing a complaint.
6. Ensuring full accessibility
In the building serving as the seat of the Office of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights an accessible working environment is ensured for physically disabled persons. The Workplace Equal Opportunities Committee makes yearly proposals for creating and developing the physical and infocommunications conditions for ensuring accessibility.
7. Final provisions
7.1. On the basis of the workers' proposals, the persons exercising the employer's rights may continuously extend the scope of beneficiaries, benefits and commitments.
7.2. This Regulation does not contain those advantages which are due on the basis of other legal rules or normative decisions or orders (Public Service Regulation of the Office).
7.3. The Equal Opportunities Regulation must be communicated to all workers of the Office of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights; workers establishing a working legal relationship with the Office must be informed of the Regulation upon their appointment, and it must also be published at the website of the Office.
7.4. The deadline for adopting the Equal Opportunities Regulation for the next period is 20th December 2012.
7.5. This Equal Opportunities Regulation enters into force on … March 2012.
Budapest, … March 2012
Dr. Ferenc Zombor
With the agreement of:
Dr. Máté Szabó
Commissioner for Fundamental Rights
Dr. Ernő Kállai
Deputy of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights responsible for the Protection of Nationalities living in Hungary
Dr. Sándor Fülöp
Deputy of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights responsible for the Protection of the Interests of Future Generations
Data are supplied on a voluntary basis. Employees submit their completed form to the head of their autonomous organisational unit. Forms shall be processed (for a definite period, confidentially and separately) as laid down in point 2 of the Equal Opportunities Regulation.
Form to be completed for the benefits laid down in the Equal Opportunities Regulation
Number of years of employment:
1. As a career starter I apply for a mentor's help:
2. I apply for a reduction of work hours on account of training or further training
a. purpose, time and place of training:
b. has a training contract been signed?:
3. I apply for a reduction of work hours on account of family conditions, namely
a. age of children:
b. state of health of children (if relevant):
c. other circumstances (e.g. single parent, if relevant):
d. extraordinary situation in family (if relevant, specify shortly)
4. I apply for traineeship
a. for which relative of mine:
b. purpose and nature of professional support
5. In order to protect my health and prevent diseases I apply for the benefit of
a. reduction of work hours on the basis of my age:
b. reduction of work hours on the basis of my state of health (because of employability, disability, chronic disease, medical control or treatment)
c. opportunities for sports activities:
d. membership in the Office's sports club
d. a health screening test:
6. I apply for homeworking (please specify shortly the nature of tasks and your experience):
7. As a commuter I apply for flexible work hours / flexible work management, namely: