Care and water workers in action
Over 400 social care workers in Legnica in south west Poland could begin strike action on 27 February if their pay demands are not met. Their union, NSZZ "Solidarność", points out that over half the workers are on the minimum wage and this is set to rise to three-quarters if the employers don’t respond to the call for pay increases. The union says that this is a fight not just about pay but for the dignity of the profession. Meanwhile, water workers in Wielkopolska in central west Poland – members of the NSZZ "Solidarność" and Forum trade unions – are involved in protests over pricing and
Waste workers take action on pay and other conditions
Members of the STAL trade union employed by two waste companies – the private FCC Environment and municipally-owned RdN – took strike action between Christmas and the new year. Workers in both companies are seeking a 10% pay rise with a minimum monthly increase of €100 and minimum wage of €850 a month. In addition, the main claim at RdN is for all workers on temporary contracts to be made permanent.
Unions reports high turnout in water and waste strikes
The STAL trade union is pleased at the high turnout of workers for the strike action on 13 December in the AdP water company and the two-day action on 9-10 December in the Tratolixo company that provides services to the municipalities of Cascais, Mafra, Oeiras and Sintra. At AdP the union is calling for a €120-a-month increase for all workers and a minimum wage of €900 a month in the face of the employer’s offer of an increase of only 1.2%. At Tratolixo the main demand is for a €100-a-month increase. In both cases the union is pushing for proper negotiations and implementation of a collective
Pay deal for water board employees
With a focus on pay and the need to secure an agreement that can help workers deal with the cost-of-living crisis, the FNV trade union has negotiated an overall pay increase of 8% for water board employees but with a flat-rate element that will mean pay rises by 10% for lower paid workers. There is a one-off payment of €1,000 gross in December 2022 and then increases of €125 and 2.5% on salaries in as of 1 January 2023. There will be a further increase of 2.5% on 1 July 2023. There will be other increases on allowances. The structural increases will mean a minimum hourly wage of €14 will apply
Water workers to strike on 13 December
Following their industrial action at the end of June, the STAL and FIEQUIMETAL trade unions have called a 24-hour strike across the AdP water company in response to an inadequate 1.2% general pay offer from the employer. This would be the only pay rise since 2009 apart from a €20 increase in 2018. The unions are calling for an €120 increase on monthly salaries and a minimum wage of €900. They have a range of other demands including full and effective implementation of the collective agreement, setting up of a new career system, payment of an allowance to cover difficult and dangerous jobs
African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights underlines importance of public services in Africa’s development
EPSU has welcomed the General Comment No. 7 on State obligations under the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights in the context of private provision of social services.
Survey reveals problems faced by workers in energy, waste and water
A survey of workers in energy, waste and water, carried out by services union ver.di, reveals widespread discontent, with many employees feeling they are insufficiently trained, overworked, health-impaired or have financial worries. Over 14,500 workers responded to the survey, highlighting a range of urgent needs that the union will aim to address. Staff shortages are creating a lot of pressure on workers and many complain about the failure of employers to offer professional training and development opportunities. With work intensity increasing there has been a dramatic rise in stress for many
Unions make progress in local negotiations
In contrast to the continuing challenge to get the central government to award a general pay rise to public service workers and sign a collective agreement, the SSM confederation reports that unions are having considerable success at local level. The UPOZ and SUTKOZ trade unions are negotiating collective agreements with municipalities and local utilities companies, securing the targeted pay increase of 2806 denari (€45) and even setting up new trade union organisations. Recent deals have been negotiated in Stip, Prilep and Struga.
Health and water workers take action
Health workers across Portugal took strike action on 1 July over a range of issues, not least pay increases to protect purchasing power. The SINTAP trade union highlights some of the key demands that include major issues relating to careers and career development, subsistence allowances, ensuring that all workers are on the single employment contract and strengthening the National Health Service in terms of both finance and staffing. Meanwhile, members of the STAL union joined the national strike in the ADP water company that is part of a long-running campaign to win improvements to pay
Unions continue campaign on collective agreements in water company
The STAL local services and FIEQUIMETAL industrial trade unions are continuing their collaboration in a campaign to assert their collective bargaining rights in the Águas de Portugal water company. The latest action was in Portalegre, north east of Lisbon where the two unions protested outside the company’s local offices. The unions are demanding that the national collective agreement be properly implemented across all the company’s subsidiaries and for negotiations on wage increases in response to the recent surge in inflation.
Pan-European Conference on Public Utilities
EPSU’s Pan-European Conference on Public Utilities is back! Join us online on Tuesday, 10 May 2022 for the opening proceedings and a panel discussion on an issue that is only becoming more important: rising energy prices, and how unions can take action.