2017 July epsucob@NEWS 12
(July 2017) Four unions at the Veolia water company took strike action on 3 July in a protest at the company's announcement of a plan for job cuts. The unions have called for negotiation of a proper plan for training and retraining and have rejected compulory redundancies with a call to defend local jobs. The unions involved in include the CGT, FO, CFE-CGC, CFTC and UNSA.
(July 2017) Firefighters are set to benefit from a new wage and pension arrangements that will see their net income protected with pension coverage to ensure there is no gap between retirement and getting the state pension. The new arrangements recognise the risks associated with the job and compensate for changes implemented in the state pensions system. Firefighters also keep their right to retire at 59. This agreement covers around 2600 firefighters in post before 2006. A deal covering all other firefighters will now be negotiated.
(July 2017) The latest issue of the OECD's Employment Outlook includes an analysis of collective bargaining trends in the leading industrial nations. The report confirms the long-term decline in collective bargaining coverage and looks at the extent to which the main negotiations in each country take place at sector and/or local level. The study notes that a higher degree of coordination of collective bargaining has been an important factor in dealing with macroeconomic shocks, citing several countries as examples, including Austria, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands and Sweden.
(July 2017) The ETUI trade union institute has published its collective bargaining newsletter for June. The 70+ articles include several covering developments in the public services in Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Luxembourg, Romania, Slovenia, Spain and the UK.
(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.
(July 2017) The OSSOO state trade union met with ministers at the end of June to discuss the pay structure in state administration, noting some progress in pay for certain categories of worker and the prospect of a new pay system. The union also reiterated its call for a 10% pay rise for state workers from September this year.
(July 2017) The POE-OTA local government workers' union, supported by the ADEDY public sector confederation, took strike action on 29 June in protest at a threat to 10000 jobs. The unions say that the Interior Ministry plans to cut 10000 contract workers' jobs as part of a package of cuts agreed in the latest negotiations with European lenders. The unions are calling for permanent jobs to be offered to all contract workers.
(July 2017) Over the past few months, the white-collar union Vision has negotiated 12 collective agreements with the KFS employers' organisation covering municipal companies in different sectors such as care, museums and property services. The agreements are similar and run to 2020. They don't have specific wage increases but individual workers negotiate their pay based on a number of factors including their responsibilities and the performance of the company. As guidance, Vision is looking at increases of 2.2% this year and next and 2.3% in 2019. The agreements also include new provisions on
(July 2017) The LVSADA health union is taking a month-long action throughout July with members working only to normal hours (168 per month). The union wants to highlight the severe shortage of staff in the sector and the need to increase pay to recruit more workers. Meanwhile, he Association of General Practitoners is taking strike action as part of a campaign to secure a pay rise.
(July 2017) A new report from the BKK business health insurance federation reveals the extent to which stress and overwork are having a negative impact on employees in the health and care sectors. With a shortfall of over 160000 workers in the sector, many employees are under a lot of pressure, working long hours and missing breaks. Workers in the sector take an average of 24 days' sick leave a year compared to 16 for workers across all sectors. Services union ver.di underlined the need for minimum staffing levels and for higher collective bargaining coverage in the sector.
(July 2017) Seventeen health sector unions have come together to condemn the government's decision to impose the 1% pay gap for another year. Meanwhile, the firefighters' union has rejected a pay offer of 2% this year and 3% in 2018, saying that it fails to take account of the increasing workloads facing firefighters and workers at the Bank of England could go on strike for the first time in over 50 years unless the employer comes up with a better pay offer by the end of the month.
(July 2017) Nurses at the Cancer Society, members of the NSF nurses' union, are continuing their strike action. They are taking action in protest at the Cancer Society's failure to guarantee employees' pay and conditions following the decision to join a different employers' organisation. The nurses are travelling around the country to communicate their message and the importance of defending their existing rights on wages and other conditions.
(July 2017) Several public sector unions in the ZSSS confederation, including those representing workers in state authorities, customs, prisons and veterinary services, have set up a strike committee to organise action to put pressure on the government. The unions want to negotiate pay increases for their members as well as end irregularities in pay across the public sector. The government has already negotiated pay deals with unions representing doctors and the police and the ZSSS unions now want to see proper negotiations over the pay increases that they say their members also deserve.
(July 2017) Following an action at the beginning of June in Madrid, the public service federations FSC-CCOO and FeSP-UGT, mobilised their members in Valladolid on 23rd June. This is the latest stage in a series of protests planned by the unions that will continue until negotiations are underway in public administration and the unions can set out their key demands on pay, hours, jobs and the other rights that public service workers have lost as a result of austerity measures.
(July 2017) The three public service federations - FP CGIL, CISL FP and UIL FPL - organised a joint mobilisation on 3rd July outside the offices of the Ministry of Labour to call for action over the future of employment centres across the country. The unions are calling for guarantees for the workers in these centres in terms of jobs and wages as well as proper investment in the provision of employment services to citizens. Around 8000 permanent staff and 2000 temporary workers are affected by the uncertainty facing the centres.