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Madrid dismisses employees of Catalan Government delegations abroad

“Explicit instructions” from Spain’s foreign office ordered “all staff” to be fired on November 30 under application of Article 155

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01 December 2017 04:34 PM

by

ACN | Brussels

Public employees of Catalan government delegations abroad have been fired by Madrid under the application of Article 155, according to an email of dismissal seen by ACN.

Staff from delegations in Paris, London, Berlin, Vienna, Washington, Copenhagen, and Rome will lose their jobs, as the Spanish government takes further measures to intervene in Catalan affairs.

Although they were not civil servants, they were public workers, and currently the only ones without managerial roles to have been dismissed with the use of Article 155 of the Spanish Constitution.

They all received an email on Thursday afternoon November 30 notifying them that they had lost their jobs that same day. One person will remain in each delegation in order to tie up administrative tasks until the end of December, when they will also lose their jobs.

A letter of dismissal

The letter of dismissal was signed by Catalonia’s Secretary General of Foreign Affairs, Aleix Villatoro. “I received explicit instructions from (Spain’s) Ministry of Foreign Affairs," says Villatoro, “on the need to proceed with the dismissals, dated November 30, of all the personnel that provide services to the Government Delegations abroad.”

Around 30 people working at Catalan delegations abroad have found themselves out of work as all government offices abroad are dismantled save in Brussels. On November 9, the government’s foreign ministry authorized workers to return to their jobs to do “internal and administrative management,” but no “institutional” work as the delegations were already closed under the application of Article 155 on October 27.

Work of a technical nature

The dismissed staff carried out work of a technical nature and were not workers with “trusted” charges of the dismissed government. Many thought, according sources, that their work situation would be suspended pending the results of the December 21 elections, and they were surprised by these “shocking” dismissals.

As the workers have local contracts based on the legislation where they reside, the dismissal procedure could prove complicated. According to sources close to the employees, the layoffs will be considered “inappropriate” with many believing that their labor rights are being violated.

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  • A letter of dismissal to one of the Catalan delegation employees abroad (by ACN)