By Lucy Ashton

The European Commission is threatening to take Italy before the Court of Justice of the European Union in two months should Italy fail to pay the arrears  in wages and pensions of its non-Italian lecturers, who include Dumbarton man David Petrie.

David Petrie, pictured right, who was brought up in Garshake and educated at Dumbarton Academy, is chairman of the lecturers union, ALLSI, the Association of Foreign Lecturers in Italy.

He told The Democrat: “Our warm thanks to the European Commission for issuing a clear and robust statement today. After almost 12 years since ALLSI reported the violation of EU law that thwarted the effect of Italian law which, according to the case law of the Court of Justice should have been implemented, the Commission has finally closed the preliminary infringement procedure.

“And announced the start of legal action for failure to fulfil obligations against Italy before the Court of Justice.

“Italy has 60 days  notice to adjust the remuneration, seniority and social security contributions of the foreign lecturers to the parameter of at least tenured researcher on fixed-term contracts with payment of arrears from the beginning of the employment relationship.

“This is finally a clear stance in the face of the evasive behaviour of the Italian legislator and university administrations, which have in recent years failed to adopt the necessary measures to overcome the ongoing discrimination against foreign lecturers in Italy, which has persisted since 1980 despite numerous interventions by the European Union and the Court of Justice.

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