IACHR

Press Release

IACHR Takes Cases involving Peru to the Inter-American Court

November 10, 2015

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María Isabel Rivero
IACHR Press and Communication Director
Tel: +1 (202) 370-9001
mrivero@oas.org

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Washington, D.C.—The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) filed an application with the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in consolidated Cases 11.602, 12.385, 12.665, and 12.666—Dismissed Employees of Petroperú, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Economy and Finance, and Empresa Nacional de Puertos—with regard to Peru.

The cases have to do with the violation of the rights to a fair trial and to judicial protection of 84 employees from Petroperú, 39 from the Ministry of Education, 15 from the Ministry of Economy and Finance, and 25 from the seaport administration company Empresa Nacional de Puertos, as a result of the lack of an adequate and effective judicial response to their collective dismissals in the context of the downsizing process carried out by the public agencies for which they worked in the 1990s. The facts in this matter share the essential characteristics of the Case of the Dismissed Congressional Employees v. Peru, which was heard by the Inter-American Court. The IACHR found the Peruvian State responsible as the dismissed workers were victims of the ineffectiveness, lack of legal certainty, and lack of independence and impartiality that characterized the judiciary at the time these events occurred. These characteristics were reflected in the victims’ defenselessness when they sought protection from the courts after their respective dismissals.

In its Merits Report, the Commission recommended that with respect to the individuals who are not on any of the lists of irregularly dismissed employees, and whose dismissals have thus not been recognized by the domestic courts, the Peruvian State should create a fast-track mechanism to perform a case-by-case assessment of their dismissals, determine whether or not they were arbitrary, and arrange appropriate reparations, including minimum elements of redress for arbitrary dismissal. With respect to the individuals who are on one of the lists or who have been afforded some form of State recognition of the irregularity of their dismissal and opted for one of the benefits under Decree 27803, the Peruvian state should create a fast-track mechanism that provides, based on a case-by-case assessment, reparations in addition to those already received by each victim under Decree 27803.  Likewise, with respect to the individuals who are on one of the lists or who have been afforded some form of State recognition of the irregularity of their dismissal but did not opt for any of the benefits under Decree 27803, the State should create a fast-track mechanism to reach a direct determination of suitable reparations, including minimum components of redress for arbitrary dismissal.
   
The Inter-American Commission submitted the case to the Court’s jurisdiction on August 13, 2015, because it found that the State of Peru had not complied with the recommendations contained in the Merits Report. The Commission submitted the entirety of the facts in that report to the Court.

This case offers the Inter-American Court an opportunity to undertake an analysis regarding the lack of a mechanism for response and comprehensive reparation when there is no effective access to justice for collective dismissals.

A principal, autonomous body of the Organization of American States (OAS), the IACHR derives its mandate from the OAS Charter and the American Convention on Human Rights. The Inter-American Commission has a mandate to promote respect for human rights in the region and acts as a consultative body to the OAS in this area. The Commission is composed of seven independent members who are elected in an individual capacity by the OAS General Assembly and who do not represent their countries of origin or residence.

No. 127/15