Maastricht spied on critical officials: report
The municipality of Maastricht hired a detective agency to read the emails of three critical officials and question them. This happened after the leak of a report on a meeting about a joint service office for Maastricht, Heerlen and Sittard-Geleen. The report referred to the possible dismissal of the critical officials, AD reports.
The detective agency had access to the three officials' confidential emails, including emails with lawyers, the Inspectorate for Social Affairs and Employment, and trade unions. The three are members of trade union CNV Overheid. According to the newspaper, the detective agency had to find out which one of the three leaked the report.
On Wednesday unions CNV and FNV received a letter from the municipality in which the three officials are cleared of all blame. But CNV Overheid is furious, according to chairman Patrick Fey. "Rights have been violated. This is not they way you treat your staff", he said to the newspaper. In a letter to Maastricht, the unions wrote: "It is an essential human right that trade unions and their local representatives can work freely and represent their interests. This freedom is in danger."
The municipality fell out with the three officials, and the unions, over a social plan which was required to merge the services of the three municipalities under a joint office, the Shared Service Center Zuid-Limburg. The municipalities, trade unions and central works councils could not reach an agreement on one. The municipalities then unilaterally pushed through a social plan, and since lost two court cases filed by the unions and works councils about it.