Press statement from the
Civil Society Organizations
In light of the Administrative Court Decision, that contravenes the foundations of fair trial, the civil society organizations call for ending the teachers’ crisis through dialogue and refraining from the use of forceful means by the government that may aggravate the current crisis
Ramallah- The civil society organizations (CSOs) followed up with deep concern the Administrative Court expedited decision on Monday 13/03/2023, ruling to stop the strike of the public school teachers, and the risk it represents over the rights and freedoms, including the right to strike. The CSOs believe that the court decision contravenes with the foundations of the right to fair trial, which provide that the trial should be public. Moreover, the way the defendants were not notified, nor their defense heard, constitutes a violation of an inherent human right, namely the right to representation in court, guaranteed in the Amended Basic Law as well as the international conventions to which the state of Palestine has acceded.
The signatories warn of the consequences of the Executive Branch using the Administrative Court’s decision in labor conflicts to impose realities, and using it to punish the striking teachers and deprive them from their rights, or exert pressure on them to intimidate or threaten to dismiss or prosecute teachers, using legal provisions applied to serve the ruling political authority rather than the public interest. This asserts our position upon establishing the Administrative Court, warning that the aim was to strengthen the powers of the ruling political authority, rather than apply the second hearing principle or adhere to the rules of complete justice.
The CSOs call for ending the teachers’ crisis through dialogue and refraining from the use of forceful means or unilateral steps by the government and its institutions that may aggravate the current crisis. They call for implementing last year’s agreement, returning the deductions applied on the teachers and stopping all the measures taken by the security services against the activist teachers. The aim is to pave the road to the normal return of education and school life for the sake of the future of the students.
While the CSOs welcome the community initiative led by the Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR), they call for taking practical steps towards the democratization of the representative bodies of the teachers and forming a comprehensive representative body for them according to the best practices of professional unions.
Teacher Creativity Center, The Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy-MIFTAH, Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center, Women Studies Center, Coalition for Accountability and Integrity - AMAN, Al-Haq, Human Rights and Democracy Media Center -Shams, The Palestinian Center for the Independence of the Judiciary and the Legal Profession- Musawa, Istiqlal, the Arab Observatory for Observation of Elections, the Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council, Faisal Husseini Foundation.