AuthorBiljana Kotevska
4.1 Genuine and determining occupational requirements ( Article 4)
In North Macedonia, national legislation provides fo r an exception for genuine and
determining occupational requirements.
Article 7 of the Anti-Discrimination Law, entitled ‘Measures and actions which are not
discrimination’ contains the following formulation for genuine and determining occupational
‘Different tr eatment of persons upon any of the discrimination grounds due to t he
nature of their occupation or activity or due to the context in which suc h occupation
is performed, which constitute a genuine an d determining requirement, the purpose
of which is legitimate, while such conditions do not breach the required level in the
course of their fulfilment.’ (Article 7(3(2)))
This is in line with the directives.
Article 8 of the Law on Labour Relations177 uses wording on exemptions from occupational
requirements in the context of access to labou r, which corresponds to the language of
Article 4 of Directive 2000/43/EC. Notably, the law states that:
It will not be considered discrimin ation making a difference, exclusion or giving
priority, when the nature of the work is such or the work is perfor med in such
conditions that the characteristics contained in Article 6 of th is law are essential and
decisive conditions for performing the work, providing that the objective to be
achieved is justified and the requirement has been carefully considered.’ 178
Although a careful cons ideration of the requirement () is n ot the same as being
proportionate (), there is room to interpret it as such. However, from the
publicly available data it cannot be concluded whether such an interpretation has been
applied in practice.
The grounds covered by the Law on Labour Relations are broader than the prot ected
grounds of the two directives and the differences in treatment in cases of determining
occupational requirements need not only b e based on the five grounds mentioned in the
directives, but can cover all protected grounds.179
4.2 Employers with an ethos based on religion or belief (Article 4(2) Directive
In North Macedonia, national law does not provide for an exception for employers with an
ethos based on religion or belief.
The Law on the Legal Position of Churches, Religious Communities and Religious Groups180
contains no specific arti cles on employment an d labour relations. Other laws also do not
include specific provisions on exemptions for employers with an ethos based on religion or
belief. However, in the exemptions from prohibition of discrimination in the Law on Labour
177 Law on Labour Relations, 2005.
178 Law on Labour Relations, 2005, Article 8.
179 The directives’ grounds of race, belief, disability, age and sexual orientation are all covered, and the Law on
Labour Relations goes beyond them in an open-ended list: sex, health condition, membership of a trade
union, social origin, position of the family, property or other personal circumstances.
180 Law on Churches, 2007. Full title: Republic of North Macedonia, Law on the Legal Position of the Church,
Communities of Faith and Religious Groups (     з   
 ), 2007, Official Gazette of the Republic of Macedonia, No. 113/07, Constitutional Court
Decision, U.br.104/2009.

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