On 28 September workers at seven university medical centres took strike action with only emergency services being maintained. This is the biggest ever action in academic hospitals which employ around 80000 workers. The FNV and CNV trade unions have rejected the employers’ latest offer which would have meant only a 1% pay rise and EUR 750 lump sum in a three-year agreement. They are calling for a 3% pay increase for each year and a minimum increase of EUR 75 a month as well as urgent action on workloads. The unions argue that excessive workloads are creating problems with increasing sickness absence and major difficulties in retaining new workers in the sector. EPSU sent a solidarity message. The NU'91 has signed the agreement which delivers a structural wage increase of 3.5% from 1 August 2022 for nurses, carers and related professions, a one-off payment of 3.5% over 2021 and a increase in the irregularity allowance by calculating the actual salary.
Medical centre staff on strike over pay and workloads
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Following last month’s strike in university medical centres, the FNV and other trade unions organised another national strike on 26 October, this time affecting more than three times as many departments across the eight centres. The action is effectively imposing a Sunday service across 279 departments including operating theatres, radiology services, laboratories, outpatient clinics and various nursing departments. All emergency care continues. The unions are calling for a 3% pay increase for all workers and action to tackle understaffing and excessive workloads.
After 11 weeks of strike action and more than 25 days of negotiations, health union ver.di and the six university hospitals in North Rhine Westphalia have agreed on the key points for a collective agreement that addresses excessive workloads and understaffing. The agreement will run from the beginning of 2023 and sets out the ratio of employees to patients required on each shift. If this ratio isn’t met or if other stressful situations occur, those affected receive stress points and then an additional day off for every seven points accumulated. In the first full year of implementation up to 11
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