Russian opposition leader launches labor union to hold regional officials accountable for Putin's salary promises
Anti-Corruption activist and opposition politician Alexey Navalny is launching his own labor union for public sector workers. Navalny says his new organization will advocate the pay raises Vladimir Putin promised millions of government employees in a series of executive decrees issued in May 2012.
The president’s “May Orders” instructed the government to raise salaries for civil servants (including doctors and teachers) to between 100 and 200 percent of the average pay in their regions, but local officials often find loopholes to shortchange workers, Navalny argues. The new labor union will offer legal help to civil servants who want to sue for their missing income, and the organization will also file complaints with state regulators.
Navalny says the union is not a partisan project, assuring potential members that their personal political leanings are irrelevant to the organization’s mission of holding regional officials accountable for the president’s executive orders.