Workers in the Liebenau Leben im Alter (LLA) non-profit eldercare provider, part of the church-based Caritas network, have taken strike action for the first time in a campaign to get a collective agreement. There are around 1.8 million workers in church-based health and social care providers where pay and conditions are set by the employer rather than by collective agreement. Last year just four ver.di members began to organise in LLA but the union now has 240 members in the organisation who want their employer to recognise the work they have been doing during the pandemic and bring their pay and conditions in line with those in the public sector.
First ever national strike in church-based eldercare
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The FNV, NU'91 and other unions representing hospital workers organised the first ever day of national industrial action in the sector on 20 November. Workers in 119 institutions took part, delivering the equivalent of a Sunday service but maintaining emergency provision. The unions are trying to put pressure on the employers to deliver a new collective agreement that addresses pay, workloads, pensions and work-life balance issues. There was also a national event in Utrecht where a petition was delivered to the head of the employers' organisation. EPSU sent a solidarity message.
Unions representing hospital workers, including FNV and NU'91, are planning the first ever national hospital strike on 20 November when non-urgent facilities will be closed. The unions are trying to put pressure on the employers to improve their latest offer in negotiations over a collective agreement covering 200000 workers. The unions want a 5% pay rise for this year plus extra payments for workers who have to work additional hours at short notice. The employers want a longer-term deal, offering the equivalent of a 2.8% increase a year but also want to reduce health insurance and sickness