Gender Equality Directorate

Gender Equality Directorate Case

Case number: P4960/11
Court:The First Basic (Municipal) Court in Belgrade
Judge: Olga Arsovic
Claimant: Lj.M from Belgrade
Defendant: Republic of Serbia, Rasim Ljajic – Minister of labor and social policy, Natalija Micunovic – Director of the Gender Equality Directorate- d Snezana Lakicevic – Vice Minister of labor and social policy

On 9th January 2011. the First municipal court of Belgrade took into consideration the complaint of Lj. M.. She claims that the following subjects discriminated against her (Republic of Serbia, Rasim Ljajic, Natalija Micunovic and Sneyana Lakicevic) and requests damages to be paid. Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (YUCOM) is representing the claimant.

After a period of dormancy, the claimant was returned to her previous position in the Ministry of labor and social policy, by the decision of the ministry mentioned. She assigned to the job of head of department for social dialogue and collective negotiations, with the job title of higher counselor. After restructuring of the ministry, she was moved to the Direction for gender equality, to the position of the manager of the group for normative and analytical studies.

Lj. M. claims that she was subjected to discrimination since the day one at her new job. She claims the following occurred: N. M, while exceeding her authority, discriminated against her by requesting that the claimant discloses certain private data. She also made inquiries through her connections in public administration on who the claimant was, and what were the reason for her placement to her current position. Lj.M. claims that the purpose of these inquiries was to find out more about her political affiliations, and that Mrs. Micunovic continued to spread rumors and gossip. The claimant maintains that she didn`t send all the necessary work material, gave her assignments on hand written notes (often unreadable), gave her unrealistic deadlines, and during the elections for the Parliament sent her sarcastic notes about candidate Tomislav Nikolic.

Lj.M. claims that S. L. refused to sign her time cards, which lead to her salary being diminished. For these reasons, the claimant was forced to go directly to the cabinet. She claims that, in order to protect her employees, she was forced to do all the assignment from second and third defendant, who increased her work load in order to punish her. She claims that the third defendant summoned her to a session of the Parliamentary committee for gender equality, but afterwards expelled her from it.

She states that she was even more offended by the mockery of her work results (graded 2 out of 5), and was forced to initiate an administrative court proceeding at the Constitutional court, in order to protect her right to be objectively assessed at work, and in order for her not to lose her job. The claimant stated that the reason she was discriminated on the basis of her political views.

She also petitioned the Ombudsman, who advised her to seek justice through court.

She asks that the court establishes that she was discriminated against by the defendants through hate and intolerance based on her political views. She claims that she suffered psychologically and was insulted. She is of the opinion that the appropriate amount of damages would be 500.000,00 RSD. She also claims damages for physical pain of 150.000,00 RSD and an additional 200.000,00 RSD for immaterial damage.

The first hearing was held on 5th September 2011, at  the next one on the 20th October of the same year. On that occasion, the charges against the defendants were dismissed. An appeal was submitted on 19th October. A first instance decision was reached, but the second instance decision was nullified, because of a significant breach of the rules of the procedure on 20th February 2013


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