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EPSU Newsletter 17 November 2011

(17 November 2011) Last week we held our 4Oth Executive Committee. This gathering of the elected representatives of public sector trade unions from across the European continent was marked again by debates on the crisis that is hitting Europe’s people’s read more

EPSU meets Members of the European Parliament to discuss

(The European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) on 9 November 2011 met with several Members of the European Parliament and their assistants from five different political parties to discuss the upcoming issues that will be debated at the European level. The meeting took place in the aftermath of the EPSU Executive Committee and it counted with the input of 30 representatives of 25 EPSU members from 15 EU Member States, partly also members of the Executive Committee. The meeting was (...)

Successful youth seminar for Czech and Slovak affiliates

(17 November 2011) The weekend of October 28th to 30th a group of more than twenty young trade unions´ members from the Czech and Slovak Republic attended a 3 day seminar in the middle of the south Moravian countryside, the so called Cow Mountain, Bořetice, to discuss the possibilities and different approaches in recruiting and organising, ie, how to attract young workers and how to improve their skills and abilities to obtain the desired goal in their trade union work. This seminar was (...)

French trade union confederation follows EPSU call on action day

(17 November 2011) One of the biggest French trade union confederation, the Conféderation Générale du Travail (CGT), through its public sector federation (UGFF-CGT), has decided to call for a Day of Action for public services following the decision of the European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) to organize a European day of action. EPSU salutes this decision to create a sense a European-wide mobilization. The appeal demands a change of the economic policies at the European level. (...)

Social dimension needed in European energy roadmaps 2050

The employers and the trade unions for the European gas sector considered their approach to the Commission’s energy road maps 2050. They agreed that a social dimension needs to be included considering employment, skills and qualifications, the role of social dialogue and information and consultation. The just transition principles need to be included. The organisations will now consult their relevant bodies. The position is important as a leaked version of the energy road maps available at (...)

Portuguese unions mobilise hundreds of thousands for Public services and against austerity!

(Brussels 15 November) The European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) sends a message of solidarity and congratulates its Portuguese affiliates for the successful demonstration that took place in Lisbon last Saturday (November 12). The demonstration was called to defend of Public services and against the austerity measures of the Portuguese Government. It was organised by all EPSU Portuguese affiliates and it had more than 180.000 participants according to the police figures. (...)

“One Hundred does not always mean One Hundred” denounce Czech health unions

(Press Communication, 14 November 2011) The Government must fulfill its commitments towards wages for health professionals in the Czech Republic. Several health trade unions in the Czech Republic demand to the Government to keep the promises made to trade unions after the doctors mobilization of last year. The Government promised a 10% raise, for all medical staff, now they are back tracking. The raise promised by the Minister of Health should be part of the annual budget decree. Health (...)

Public service unions in Europe coordinate action against austerity!

(Press release, 10 November 2011) The Executive Committee of the European Federation of Public Services (EPSU) decided to coordinate on November 30th across Europe a day of joint action against austerity and for Social Europe. This coincides with the meeting of the Council of Finance Ministers in Brussels and with the Employment Council the day after. Angry about the inability of European leaders to define a positive solution to the crisis and following many national actions by public (...)

Canada - EU trade agreement: a Trojan horse against public services

(Press communication – 7 November 2011) The European Federation of Public Services Unions (EPSU), the Austrian Trade Union Federation (OGB) office in Brussels and the Austrian Federal Chamber of Labour (AK) organise a meeting to launch a major study that questions the objectives, motivation and rationale behind proposed changes to the current definition of public services and trade agreements. In the current context of crisis and indebted local and regional governments, the CETA (...)

EPSU protests against dismissal of public employees in Equador

EPSU letter of protest: PSI briefing: ECUADOR – ARBITRARY DISMISSALS OF PUBLIC EMPLOYEES PSI is asking affiliates to send letters of protest to the Ecuadorian government, in order to denounce the arbitrary dismissal of thousands and public employees. On 28 October, Ecuador’s Minister for Labour Relations decided to implement the “compra obligatoria de renuncias” – somewhat akin to summary dismissal, but with compensation – in the case of at least 3,029 public servants, mainly in the health (...)

Dirty trade’ challenges EU vision of recycling society

(3 November 2011) According to research of the European Environmental Agency transportation and shipment of waste out of Europe is increasing despite efforts to reduce, re-use and recycle waste in the EU. Europe’s rising waste export is not confined to illegal hazardous materials, which made headlines when it emerged that poor workers in India have been dismantling rubbish from batteries to used warships containing Asbestos. Exports also relate to the legal shipments of non-hazardous wastes (...)

European Commission gives more emphasis to Corporate Social Responsibility

(3 November 2011) In a communication of 25 October the Commission sets out its new strategy to enhance Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). It sets out how enterprises can benefit from CSR as well as contributing to society as a whole by taking greater steps to meet their social responsibility. The Commission concluded earlier that CSR is most likely to contribute to the long-term success of the enterprise when it is fully integrated into business strategy. Enterprises should have a (...)

EPSU members brush up their lobbying techniques

(3 November 2011) EPSU members from local, regional and national government met on 5 October to develop EPSU’s lobbying capacity and to draw on good practices. Following reflection on EPSU work on the FTT (Financial Transactions Tax) and public procurement, the workshop noted that it is important not to be boxed into a technical ‘Eurocratic’ debate – both procurement and FTT can, and should, be presented and discussed in a political way at all levels. EPSU members also had an exchange with (...)