European Social Charter

The Committee concludes that criminal investigation officers in Portugal do not receive sufficient remuneration for overtime work
European Council of Police Trade Unions v. Portugal (CESP), Complaint No. 60/2010

[05/03/2012]  The decision on the merits of the European Committee of Social Rights with regard to the case European Council of Police Trade Unions (CESP) v. Portugal, Complaint No. 60/2010, became public today.1 This case concerns remuneration for overtime work performed by police officers in the Portuguese criminal police force.

The complaint submitted by the CESP was registered on 18 March 2010.

The complainant organisation claimed that the method for calculating remuneration for overtime work performed by criminal investigation officers in the Portuguese Criminal Police force, which is contained in Regulation No. 98/97 of 13 February 1997 and confirmed by Regulation No. 18/2002 of 5 April 2002, infringes Article 4§2 of the Charter, because the assessment of remuneration for overtime work is based on a rate which is below the normal hourly rate for police officers, and with a per diem limit.

The CESP also contends that in Portugal police officers do not enjoy, in practice, the right to bargain collectively (Articles 6 §§ 1 and 2 of the Charter) and the right to take part in the determination and improvement of the working conditions and working environment (Article 22 of the Charter).

In its decision of 17 October 2011, the Committee concluded by a majority of 13 to 1, that there was a violation of Article 4§2 (right to increased rate of remuneration for overtime work) of the Revised Charter on the grounds that police officers on active prevention duties (prevenção activa) and shift duties (serviço de piquete) do not receive increased remuneration for over time. The Committe also concluded unanimously that there was no violation of Article 6§§ 1 and 2 nor of Article 22 of the Revised Charter.

Decision on the merits
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1 It is recalled that pursuant to Article 8§2 of the Protocol, this decision has been made public after four months after it has been transmitted to the Committee of Ministers dated 4 November 2011.