Feb. 15, 2018
Brussels Film Premiere of 'Up to the last drop' on February 22nd at the Vendome cinema organized by trade unions and civil society organizations
Why is the EU inciting Southern European countries to privatize their distribution services and to recycle their water? An Investigation at the heart of a secret war that our future depends on.
Feb. 08, 2018 At an early stage of the negotiations in local government the KL employers' organisation has said it will allocate around 500 million krone (EUR 67 million) to tackle major staffing shortages in health and social care. In December, KL and the FOA public services union issued a joint report which revealed that 73% of municipalities faced shortages of skilled staff, particularly in the field of eldercare. FOA gave a positive reaction to the news but underlined that they and other public sector unions still had key demands for tackling low pay and the gender pay gap.
Feb. 08, 2018 The FP CGIL trade union has signed a new collective agreement covering firefighters which has important provisions for a general pay rise, increased overtime pay and increased payments recognising the arduousness of the occupation. With these key pay-related elements agreed, the union says that negotiations will now move on to deal with a wide range of other employment conditions covering health and safety, provisions for firefighters who can no longer manage active service, training, insurance against occupational accidents and diseases as well as the overall organisation of the service.
Feb. 08, 2018
New study demands Commission to support institutional environment for Human Right to Water – and to avoid threats to it
The European Commission published its proposals for a Recast of the Drinking Water Directive, 1 February 2018. They include amendments to guarantee vulnerable groups access to safe and affordable water.
Feb. 08, 2018 The Eurofound research agency has published a new report that analyses how gender pay audits have been implemented in four countries - Austria, Denmark, Sweden and Finland. It is based on company-level gender pay reports and reveals that there have been mixed results in terms of compliance, in the initial phase. It also highlights room for improvement in engaging employee representatives and in raising employees’ awareness.
Feb. 08, 2018 Negotiations have begun over changes to the public sector pensions scheme. The Fagforbundet trade union is particularly concerned about addressing gender equality issues and for pensions to take account of the arduousness of many jobs in health and social care which are dominated by women. The demands of many of these jobs often mean that workers cannot stay at work until normal pension age and so there have to be suitable arrangements for early retirement. The union also wants to see improvements in the rules covering the combination of work and retirement.
Feb. 08, 2018 A new report from the Kommunal local government union paints a positive picture of pre-school education but reveals increased pressure on staff, a failure to ensure appropriate staffing levels and an excessive use of fixed-term contracts. The report is based on a large survey of Kommunal members and interviews with 3352 childcare workers. The survey found that 39% of childcare workers found their work mentally exhausting, up by 15% since 2012. The union wants to see proper application of the official guidelines on staff/child ratios and an increase in the number of staff on permanent contracts.
Feb. 08, 2018 The STAL local government has organised a demonstration outside the local government ministry on 9 February in protest at the government's failure to increase pay rates for the lowest paid municipal workers. A combination of a freeze in pay progression and a freeze on pay scales since 2009 means that workers on the bottom two pay scales have seen their pay rates (EUR 450 and EUR 532.08) overtaken by the national minimum wage (EUR 580). Under government proposals those on the two lowest pay bands will be stuck on the minimum wage, while those who progress to the third pay level will only see their pay improve by EUR 0.89. STAL wants an immediate response from the government to offer these workers, some with 20 years' service, more than just the minimum wage.
Feb. 08, 2018 Waste workers in northern Germany, members of the ver.di trade union have criticised their employer, Remondis, for switching to a different sector collective agreement. From the beginning of February the company said it would apply the freight and logistics agreement rather than the private waste agreement. The company argues that this makes no difference but the union points out that it delivers no improvements. Ver.di says that drivers are on a starting wage of EUR 11.95 an hour (less in some areas) and that many don't progress from this level. Meanwhile, the Rethmann Group which owns Remondis, has seen profits increase. The union is aiming for local agreements and a pay rise of 6%.