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Turkey

Having A Drink In Turkey Could Soon Cost You Your Job

The Turkish Parliament is weighing whether to revise a clause in its Workplace Safety Law that could lead to the dismissal of employees who attend work after having consumed alcohol.

Just a glass of raki with your lunch? (jonez)
Just a glass of raki with your lunch? (jonez)
Enis Tayman

ISTANBUL – Turkey's current Workplace Safety Law includes clause No. 84: employers can dismiss employees who appear "intoxicated" and/or "drunk." But there is a subtle but significant new change being proposed that could result in employees being fired -- without severance -- for the simple consumption of alcohol.

The Turkish parliament could approve the amendment to the law before it adjourns for summer recess in late June. Lawyers warn that the written changes could be problematic in legal and political terms.

The original version of the clause reads: "It is strictly forbidden to attend the workplace drunk or having taken drugs, and the consumption of these substances are banned within the workplace."

The amended version of the clause reads: "It is strictly forbidden to attend the workplace having consumed alcohol or drugs and the consumption of these substances are banned within the workplace."

Dr. Ahmet Sevimli, a member of the Uludağ University Law Faculty, explained how easily the revision in the law could result in the termination of an employee's contract. "An employee who has consumed alcohol the night before could have a certain amount of alcohol in his/her blood the next day. Similarly, the same applies for an employee who has had a drink at lunch time, but is not drunk. If the law is passed, then this employee could be fired immediately without severance," said Sevimli.

Dr. Ufuk Aydın, a Law Professor at Anadolu University agrees with Sevimli. "Many workers will have a beer or glass of wine at lunchtime and return to work without being drunk. This new law works against the employee," he said.

Read the original article in Turkish

Photo – jonez

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