Argentina's Labor Court ruled in favor of laid-off Telam workers on Friday, saying the dismissal of the 357 communication employees was illegal and they must be reinstated.
Attorney for the Press Union of Buenos Aires (Sipreba), Guillermo Gianibelli, announced the court's decision via an audio broadcast across social networks.
The case was brought by five former employees who signed their names on a precautionary measure. According to Labor Judge Ricardo Tatarsky, the dismissal of the five journalists was illegal because the state agency failed to take the necessary steps outlined in a crisis prevention plan, which provides security for both company and employees.
"Labor law has as basic and fundamental support the commitment to the real truth... so the undersigned cannot ignore that the alleged general restructuring led to a massive lay-off of workers," Judge Tatarsky said.
Therefore, per the law of relativity, the dismissal of the remaining 352 staff also contradicted labor laws, Mariano Suarez, Sipreba delegate and agency worker, said on Twitter.
"We had a favorable ruling from the labor courts, which considered that the company to dismiss massively had to comply with a preventive crisis procedure that was not carried out. Therefore, these dismissals are null and illegal and the workers must be reinstated as we have demanded from the first day, 18 days ago," Suarez said.
Telam workers were dismissed on June 26 with no apparent cause and without previous legal procedures. Since then, workers, social organizations, unions and opposition lawmakers have demanded their reinstatement.
On Tuesday, workers and supporters were symbolically 'hugging' Telam's office building when they found out about the ruling.