2021 EPSU Collective Bargaining News May No.11
After lengthy negotiations, arbitration in the municipal sector has produced a deal supported by the trade unions. The overall package is worth 2.82%, slightly ahead of inflation and above the 2.7% in the industry sector which is normally seen as setting the pattern for pay bargaining. Pay increases range from NOK 10000 (EUR 980) a year to NOK 22000 (EUR 2150). There is a pot worth 1% that will be dealt with by local negotiations which will aim to contribute to retaining, developing and recruiting staff and acknowledging increased formal and informal competence development. It will also
Unions representing workers across municipalities and regions are negotiating with the SKR and Sobona employer organisations on changes to the crisis agreement. The aim is to ensure that the agreement is better adapted to longer crisis situations, based on experience from the pandemic. The crisis agreement can be activated temporarily by the employers in special crisis situations and means that regular working hours are increased at the same time as staff receive higher compensation. The agreement also allows for special emergency overtime and relocation of staff. It was drawn up with short
The main trade union confederations are taking part in the major national demonstration on 28 May. The unions are particularly concerned about the government’s refusal to engage in meaningful social dialogue and to consult trade unions over key pieces of legislation. The unions are also raising concerns about government plans on tax and other measures that mainly benefit the rich and risk undermining the welfare state. EPSU sent messages of solidarity.
During the second round of negotiations in central government the trade unions raised a number of issues that they want to see addressed. This includes the need to carry out a detailed review of the measures on worker and trade union participation introduced in the last national collective agreement (2016-2018) and to ensure their full effectiveness and enforceability to strengthen the involvement of employees and their representatives in organisational matters that impact on the employment relationship. This includes, for example, the workings of the joint innovation committee that will deal
Members of the FNV trade union have been involved in local action at University Medical Centres (UMCs) in protest at the employers’ “offer” of a pay freeze. After five months of negotiations, employers haven’t shifted at all and are sticking to a 0% wage increase. They are also refusing to negotiate reductions in workloads and measures that would allow older colleagues to retire in a healthy manner. The FNV argues that the employers have the money to fund a pay increase and other initiatives but are more interested in investing in equipment. The FNV argues that the employers are failing to
Trade unions representing workers in local government and non-teaching staff in schools and higher education have rejected the 1.5% pay offers made by employers across these sectors. In local government and schools unions were looking for a 10% pay rise to begin to restore the loss of purchasing power over more than 10 years of pay freezes and below-inflation increases. They also argue that the pay offer is an insult in view of the efforts made by workers during the pandemic. In higher education the unions had claimed a GBP 2500 (EUR 2900) annual increase and minimum hourly wage of GBP 10 (EUR
Trade unions representing workers in public and private sector childcare and after-school provision organised a demonstration outside the ministry of education on 27 May in protest at the failure of the government to include trade unions in the Advisory Board for Elementary Education. The unions argue that it is unacceptable not to ensure that the views of the 61500 workers in the sector are taken into account when developing education policy, particularly in the light of the exceptional commitment they have shown during the pandemic.
The public service federations in the CCOO and UGT confederations have set out a number of demands on the government to take effective measures solve the persistent problem of temporary employment in the public sector. As long ago as 2017 an agreement was negotiated to get temporary employment below 8% in the follow-up to legal rulings on excessive use of temporary contracts. The unions underline the importance of consolidating temporary staff into permanent positions taking account of their experience. The unions also want to see measures are taken that will ensure permanent reductions in
On 25-26 May EPSU, along with the European trade union federations for police (EuroCOP) and military personnel (EUROMIL), organised a conference to launch a new project on trade union rights. The project will explore the extent to which public service trade unions face limitations or bans on their rights to organise, negotiate and take industrial action. The project will also focus on transposition of the Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions Directive which includes an article allowing governments to exclude certain groups of public service workers from parts of the directive. Over
A survey of student early years educators, carried out by the SIPTU trade union, found that one third intended to leave the sector, with low pay the main issue forcing them into a change of career or into working abroad. A massive 94% of students don’t believe the current wages in the sector are fair. Of the 945 people surveyed, over half are currently working in the sector as well as studying and of these 47% are earning below the living wage of €12.30 per hour. The union wants to see a publicly funded model of early years education and childcare which includes a mechanism for ensuring
The FOA trade union has welcomed the government decision to set up a committee to examine the problem of pay inequality. FOA has been part of a large group of trade unions that have been pushing for new measures to achieve pay equality. While collective bargaining has been able to deliver some improvements public service unions argue that the problem requires a broader political approach. The committee will analyse the pay gap across all sectors and is due to report in May 2022.
The Sanitas health union is calling on the government to offer permanent employment to the many medical and auxiliary workers who were taken on to help cope with the pandemic. These workers will see their contracts terminated once the end of the emergency is declared. The union argues that these workers have clearly demonstrated their skills and competences in helping to deal with the crisis with many facing high risks of infection and some even losing their lives to COVID. Sanitas also sees continuing staff shortages as another argument for offering these workers permanent employment.