Strike secures staffing, working time and training improvements

Germany

The ver.di services union is celebrating a major victory in Berlin where members in the health sector have been on strike for 31 days. Workers at the Charité university hospital, Vivantes clinics and their joint subsidiary, Labor Berlin, have now suspended the action, pending negotiations over new collective agreements. The key points in the new deal at the Charité hospital include more than 700 additional nursing staff to be hired over the next three years and there will be new benchmarks for staffing for specific wards such as intensive care units, operating theatres and central emergency rooms. Employees will be able to collect points – for example for work in understaffed shifts – which they redeem as extra time off.  In a separate deal at the Vivantes clinics, a new agreement will set out staff/patient ratios for each shift and if these are not met then the employees affected receive a burden compensation. There is also a new commitment to provide training.

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