2022 March EPSU Collective Bargaining Newsletter No.5
State sector trade unions have negotiated a two-year agreement which delivers a 2.0% pay increase this year on 1 June for 78000 workers. The agreement runs from 1 March 2022 to 29 February 2024. Negotiations on a pay increase for 2023 will take place late this year with a deadline of 21 December. If that deadline is missed then it will be possible to terminate the agreement. The unions have also managed to get long-sought changes to the rules that apply to the payment of supplementary and overtime pay when the working period or working week is unexpectedly interrupted due to illness or other
Negotiations between the ver.di service union and the VKA local government employers’ association took place on 25 February but were suspended with no proposals from the employers on how to improve pay and conditions for workers involved in early years education and social services. The union is concerned that urgent action is needed to deal with the shortage of 173,000 skilled workers in day-care centres alone but the VKA has rejected union proposals to reduce workloads. Ver.di believes that there was a constructive atmosphere in the negotiations but there were no concessions from the
A survey of workers in elder care by the Kommunal municipal services union reveals the worrying extent of staffing problems across the sector. The union underlines that staffing, working conditions, working environment and quality of operations are closely linked and that in order for elderly care to have a sustainable working environment, with the right staffing, profound changes are needed, at all levels of the organization. The report found that 37% of elderly care members believe that staffing is rarely or never sufficient and half of respondents find it difficult to take shorter breaks at
The Fp-Cgil, FNS-Cisl and Confsal trade unions have negotiated a new three-year agreement covering firefighters that they have welcomed for delivering a number of benefits for workers. The unions note in particular improvements to the systems of labour relations and action on protecting employment. Alongside pay increases there will be improvements to supplementary pensions and insurance. The three federations argue that the agreement (actually covering the period 2019-2021) is a major step forward and marks successful co-operation with the government. Monthly pay rates will increase by
The four trade unions in public and private healthcare – younion, GÖD, vida and GPA – have joined forces with the ÖGB trade union confederation, the Chamber of Labour and Chamber of doctors in a “health offensive” to push for increased funding for health and long-term care. On 24 February the organisations joined in demonstrations across the country under the banner “It’s five past midnight” to promote a national petition calling for action on pay and conditions, staffing and training.
A new research briefing from the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) shows not only that performance-related pay (PRP) is becoming increasingly prevalent across the EU but that it contributes to pay inequalities between men and women. Men are more likely to get PRP, and in higher amounts, because it tends to be available in larger firms, at the higher end of the wage distribution, for full-time rather than part-time work, and in certain sectors and occupations. The ETUI argues that the current EU equal pay legal framework and proposed Directive on pay transparency, may only be of limited
After a campaign of lobbying and industrial action lasting for over three years, the Fórsa public services trade union is to ballot its school secretary members on proposals to standardise their employment terms and conditions as drafted in negotiations at the Workplace Relations Commission. The union will recommend its members vote to support the new arrangements which will contribute to reducing different pay arrangements for school secretaries depending on whether they are directly employed by schools or by central government. There will be a new pay scale and an agreed method of
Seven trade union federations representing customs workers are coordinating a day of strike action on 10 March. The unions are angry about the lack of investment and cuts in jobs across the service. They have produced evidence in a survey of workers that found over nine out of 10 employees concerned by the incessant reforms and restructuring and just under nine out of 10 complaining of a deterioration in the quality of services provided. The seven unions have a broad range of demands including the end to job cuts and the need for urgent and significant recruitment. They are also looking for
The ADEDY civil service confederation has called for support for the 24-hour strike action on 2 March by its federation – ODYE – representing staff in the justice sector. The federation has a range of demands including the need to fill all vacant posts, substantial increases in wages to cover the wage losses from long-term pay freezes, re-establishing special allowances and 13th and 14th month salaries, recruitment of permanent cleaning and technical staff, ensuring modern and safe working conditions and major improvements and upgrading of the material and technical infrastructure.
Federations in the CCOO confederation will organise a protest on 7 March over the refusal of employer associations in the nursing homes and home care sector to update the salary tables for 2022. The collective agreement for the sector links pay to inflation and the increase for 2022 should be 6.5% based on the inflation index to December 2021. The federations are highly critical of the employers’ refusal to properly apply the salary revision clause that has not raised any problems in recent years and of their block on negotiations. They underline the urgent need for a pay rise in the sector
The FOA trade union has raised its concerns about the impact of rising inflation on workers’ incomes and particularly those on low pay. The union says it will take action to try to protect workers’ purchasing power but that it wants to do more than this with its campaign on equality – “More equality lifts us all”. While pay is important, FOA wants to ensure broader issues of equality are also addressed in terms, for example, of consumption opportunities and recognition of traditional women's professions. The union also underlines the importance of reducing inequality by increased access to
The VPOD public services union has reacted positively to the decision by the Zurich regional hospital in Wetzikon to reduce the working week for nurses from 42 to 37.8 hours, with full pay. The initiative runs until the end of 2023 and only applies to nurses who regularly work in the three-shift model, i.e. who also provide night and weekend services. The union launched a charter for health workers in 2019 that called for reduced working hours on full pay as part of a wider range of measures to make substantial improvements to working conditions and improve recruitment and retention. VPOD sees