Oct. 23, 2017
The concept of Just Transition was at the heart of the discussion at the EPSU’s Utilities Standing Committee where decarbonisation and digitalisation of the European economy were deeply debated amongst members.
Aug. 25, 2017 After lengthy negotations, services union ver.di has endorsed a new agreement with the Uniper energy company that it will put to its members over the coming weeks. Key elements of the deal are commitments to no compulsory redundancies and to an early retirement scheme, seen by ver.di as important for the company's coal-powered operations that will face restructuring. This part of the agreement will run to 2022 while the long-term pay deal will run to 2024. The union prevented the company from cutting bonuses like Christmas pay but performance pay will be ended. In 2018 workers will get a lump sum of €1000 and then a €50 increase on pay.in 2019. There will be an annual bonus €400, but payable only to trade union members. There are also guarantees on apprentice numbers.
Jul. 07, 2017 (July 2017) The energy workers' union has achieved a significant victory in negotiating a new collective agreement covering the Narva power plants in Eastern Estonia after the company had indicated that it wanted to end collective bargaining. The union managed to retain all existing rights and benefits as well as negotiate a 3.5% pay increase backdated to 1 March 2017. The pay deal covers this year while the collective agreement overall runs until the end of 2018.
Apr. 19, 2017 (April 2017) The Estonian energy workers' union organised a picket of the Eesti Energia power company on 18 April supported by the EAKL trade union confederation and several other trade unions. The protest was over the threat by the company to end collective agreements and leave workers on legal minimum standards. The company also wants to consolidate various payments into the basic salary and effectively end collective bargaining. The union has also called on the public conciliation office to intervene and help resolve the dispute. Further information is in the attached union statement.
Mar. 17, 2017 (March 2017) Five energy federations, including FNME-CGT, FNEM-FO, CFDT, CGC and CFE, organised a joint day of action and strikes on 14 March in their campaign to secure a pay increase as well as an end to restsructuring and job cuts. The unions want to see an increase applied to the basic pay structure but employers in the sector have only been offering changes to other payments and have refused an increase on the basic salary which would guarantee a pay increase for all workers in the sector. EPSU sent a solidarity message.
Mar. 17, 2017 (March 2017) Services union ver.di has negotiated a new two-year agreement with the AVEU employers' organisation covering over 100 small firms in the energy and waste sectors, employing around 19000 workers and some 1600 apprentices. The 2.5% pay increase is from 1 March and early next year there will be a lump sum payment of EUR 600. The increase is ahead of or in line with others in the industry, such as ENGIE (1.9% from January) and AVE Hessen (2% from February) and Energie Südwest (2.45% from February). The union highlights the increases for apprentices.
Mar. 02, 2017 (March 2017) The Supreme Court has ruled that energy company British Gas can no longer appeal against a European Court ruling that holiday pay should take account of earnings based on commission. The case has been supported by public services union Unison and is based on the Working Time Directive. The union challenged British Gas because it restricted holiday pay only to basic pay which penalised workers who received a lot of commission pay. Unison is concerned about the impact of Brexit on this important legislation.
Jan. 30, 2017 (January 2017) Member of five trade unions organising in the energy sector, CGT, CFDT, FO, CFE-CGC and CFTC, called for strike action on 31 January in protest at the employers' attempt to freeze pay in the sector. The unions say that workers will not pay the price of restructuring in the sector and want immediate negotiations on pay. They also call on the government (the majority shareholder in the major energy companies EDF and ENGIE) to come up with an industrial strategy for the sector. EPSU sent a message of support.