Sep. 13, 2019 Members of the ver.di public services union employed by the private healthcare company Asklepios are taking action across the country to try to secure collective agreements. Only a third of the company's 46000 workers are covered by an agreement with most facing unilateral decisions by management on their pay. In some facilities this means employees are being paid EUR 1000 a month less than those doing the equivalent job in a public sector hospital. In some cases workers have rejected higher pay offers from management and demanded that the union be able to negotiate a collective agreement.
Aug. 23, 2019 Following talks with the BVAP eldercare employers' organisation, the ver.di services union has confirmed that both parties are committed to negotiate a sector collective agreement by the end of the year. They have also made it clear that they want the labour ministry to extend the agreement to cover all employers in the sector to prevent those paying low wages from undercutting the agreement. Ver.di and BVAP believe this is essential to ensuring decent pay in the sector and making occupations eldercare more attractive to workers.
Aug. 08, 2019 The WSI trade union-linked research organisation has published its half-year analysis of pay settlements and noted that the average increase of 3.2% is slightly up on last year's 3.0%. With inflation averaging 1.6% this means average real wage increases of 1.6%. WSI says this confirms an upward trend in pay and notes that in the first half of this year some of the large agreements have registered the highest increases, including engineering (4.1%), iron and steel (3.9%) and regional government (3.6%).
Aug. 07, 2019 Services union ver.di has managed to organise and make progress towards a collective agreement in the uni-assist agency that checks applications to universities from overseas students. The agency was set up in 2003 and now has 300 employees, with ver.di membership now at 60% of those on permanent contracts. The union is aiming to secure an agreement in line with the public sector agreement and is focusing on a number of specific issues including a reduction to a 38.5 hour week from 40 hours. The agency is now a guest member of the Berlin municipal employers' organisation but without committing to sign up to the sector agreement. Ver.di has drafted a collective agreement and hopes to make progress in negotiations with the agency but doesn't rule out action, including warning strikes, to put pressure on the employers.
Jul. 24, 2019 Services union ver.di has welcomed the establishment of a new employers' organisation - BVAP - covering the eldercare sector. The union will aim to begin talks as soon as possible over a collective agreement and is even optimistic that one could be negotiated by the end of the year. Ver.di would also aim to get the Ministry of Labour to extend the agreement to all employers in the sector. It is disappointed that so far the Red Cross has refused to join the new organisation. Ver.di wants to secure pay levels in eldercare comparable to the public sector which it argues are vital to retain experienced staff and improve recruitment of new workers.
Jul. 09, 2019 The ver.di and IG BCE energy unions have negotiated a new 18-month agreement covering around 20000 workers. The TG Energie negotiations include EON Energie and a range of other electricity and gas companies. The main element of the agreement is a 3.7% pay increase. There will also be a 75 EURO a month increase for trainees along with a commitment that they will be offered a job once they successfully complete their training. This commitment will be in force until 2022.
May. 28, 2019 The ver.di health union in the Baden-Württemberg region has successfully negotiated a new pay deal with the Schmieder group of rehabilitation clinics that brings the pay of the 2000 employees in line with pay in municipal hospitals. The agreement will run until 31 March 2021 when the union will again aim to keep pay in alignment. There is only one other private health facility in the region - a non-profit organisation - that is also in line with the public sector. Ver.di sees the Schmieder deal as setting the standard and negotiated just in time to put pressure on the Waldberg-Zeil clinic in Oberschwaben where the next round of negotiations takes place on 19 June and where 600 workers have already taken strike action.
May. 16, 2019
Trade unions set up global union network in German multinational Fresenius active in care and renal dialysis
The German company Fresenius active across the global in care, renal dialysis and medical products is quickly building a reputation of a company that does not respect its workers.
May. 16, 2019 Negotiations over the pay and conditions of 55000 hospitals doctors are set to resume on 21 May with the Marburger Bund doctors' union looking for a clear statement from the VKA municipal employers' organisation on two key points - the demand for two free weekends each month and a maximum number of hours on standby duty. The union has organised a number of warning strikes to support its negotiating team and will consider further action if the VKA doesn't make a better offer in the next negotiating round.
Apr. 30, 2019 Health and care union ver.di is keeping up the momentum of its campaign to secure appropriate staffing levels in health, eldercare and other services. It is again organising a demonstration to coincide with the annual meeting of regional health ministers in Leipzig on 5 June. The union acknowledges that some progress has been made in terms of pay and funding for extra jobs but proposed minimum staffing levels don't ensure adequate levels of care. The union still wants to see federal standards for staffing that would deliver good quality care and it also wants to ensure that rehabilitation and psychiatric services are included.
Apr. 16, 2019 The Marburger Bund (MB) doctors' union organised a warning strike and 5000-strong national demonstration in Frankfurt on 10 April in protest at the failure of the VKA employers' organisation to address the union's key demands on working time. The negotiations cover around 55000 doctors employed in 500 municipal hospitals across the country. MB is calling for a set of clear measures to ensure better working time planning, reduced workloads and more free time. Following the third round of bargaining the union regards the latest employers' offer as just not worth considering. MB is looking for a reform of rules on on-call time, strict procedures on recording working time, two free weekends per month, clear maxima for on-call hours, no full-time work after a period on on-call and additional pay for on-call hours. The union has convened its collective bargaining committee to decide what next steps to take.
Apr. 15, 2019 Following the successfuly negotiations covering over a million regional government workers earlier this year, the ver.di public service union has negotiated a similar deal for the 45000 employees of the Hessen region in central west Germany which is not part of the national negotiations. The 30-month agreement runs until 30 September 2021 with pay rises for all workers worth 3.2% (minimum EUR 100) in both March 2019 and February 2020 and a third stage increase of 1.4% in January 2021. Workers on entry grades will see higher increases amounting to 11% over the course of the agreement.
Mar. 27, 2019 After three rounds of negotiations, the ver.di health union has managed to negotiate a 6.5% rise for the 18000 workers employed by the Helios health company. On top of this nurses and midwives will get an additional allowance worth up to EUR 300 a month depending on level of qualifications. The 6.5% will be paid in three stages: 3.0% backdated to 1 January, 2.5% from 1 January 2020 and 1.0% from 1 November 2020. There will also be increases of EUR 60 (January 2019) and EUR 40 (January 2020) for trainees. Ver.di is pleased that the additional allowance acknowledges the value of nurses' work and their heavy workloads but is disappointed the payment won't come until next year.
Mar. 14, 2019 After three days of negotiations in the third round of bargaining, services union ver.di emerged with a significant pay increase for regional government workers and in particular workers in health and social care. The basic deal means increases of 3.2% from 1 January 2019 (minimum EUR 100 a month) and again on 1 January 2020 (minimum EUR 90). There will be a further increase of 1.4% (min EUR 40) on 1 January 2021. Trainees will get two increases of EUR 50 in 2019 and 2020 plus an extra day of paid leave. Minimum pay rates in the 15 pay groups will also increase which will mean new starters will see pay rise by 11% in two stages. Finally health and social care workers will move to the local authority pay scale which for workers with three years of training will mean a gross monthly pay rise of EUR 380.
Mar. 06, 2019
How remunicipalisation of water services in Rostock delivered lower prices and better collective agreement
It took years of sustained effort. In the end trade unions, city councillors and water activists convinced the German city council of Rostock its water services are better off being run public.