2022 November EPSU Collective Bargaining Newsletter No.23
The RCN nursing union has voted for industrial action for the first time in its history and strikes over pay across the health service could spread as other unions’ ballot results are announced in the coming weeks. UNISON is recommending strike action to its 350,000 members in England, Wales and Northern Ireland with the ballot due to end on 25 November. Members of the GMB union in Northern Ireland have already voted for strike action there. Meanwhile Unite plans to ballot its members in England and Wales and is already carrying out ballots of its members in the ambulance service, as is the
The FNV trade union reports that the employers have stalled the negotiations in the childcare sector after three rounds of bargaining. The union says that while the employers acknowledge the major problems of overwork and understaffing they are not willing to take the urgent action required to tackle them. The FNV wants a one-year agreement covering 2023 that will deliver a pay rise compensating for inflation plus €100 a month, a minimum hourly wage of €14.00 and an increase in the end-of-year bonus from 3% to 5% of salary. It has also proposed improvements in work-life balance in relation to
The FeSP-UGT and FSC-CCOO public service federations are set to mobilise their members working in social security in protest at the ministry’s failure to address longstanding problems in the department. The unions argue that the ministry is hiding behind the Treasury in claiming that it doesn’t have the funds to address a range of issues including a commitment to improve working conditions. The federations also have major concerns about management of the department and oppose the decision to recruit a large number of interns which the unions argue will not address the need for additional
The vida private services union has been organising workplace meetings in the religious hospitals that employ around 10,000 workers across the country. The key question for employees will be their view on potential strike action to support the union’s demand for higher pay in response to soaring inflation. In one of the first workplace meetings on 4 November the initial soundings produced 95% support for industrial action. The meetings continue until 10 November. Vida is calling for an increase of €500 a month and a minimum monthly salary of €2000. With no result after the first round of
The SIPTU trade union has called for the pay rates of workers in early years education to keep pace with the Living Wage following the announcement that it is to increase by €0.95, taking it to €13.85 per hour. Childcare professionals secured an historic first pay deal this year, establishing a minimum rate of pay of €13 per hour. This was €0.10 cent over the Living Wage at the time. The union is now calling on the government and employers to deliver a pay increase to reflect the rise in the cost of living otherwise all the work done to address low pay, high staff turnover and the recruitment
The LO, mainly blue-collar workers’ trade union confederation, has put specific figures to its proposed pay coordination formula that it has drafted for the pay bargaining round in early 2023 with a key aim of supporting lower paid workers. The general pay claim would be for a 4.4% increase but with a minimum increase of SEK 1192 (€110) for those earning less than SEK 27100 (€2500) a month and with an increase of SEK 1371 (€126) on minimum wages in collective agreements. The majority of LO member organisations backed the plan although there are some concerns that the overall target is too low
An analysis for the ETUC by the European Trade Union Institute reveals that deaths at work will continue to blight Europe for almost a decade longer than previously forecast after a rise in fatal accidents in almost half of member states. The latest figures for 2019 and 2020 show that deaths at work rose in 12 countries, most notably in Italy (+285), Spain (+45) and Portugal (+27). The ETUC is calling on the EU and national governments to stop workplace deaths by backing its Zero Death at Work manifesto which calls on the European Union, member state governments and employers to commit to and
Following the threat of protests and other actions, public sector unions, including the SDLSN state sector union and HSSMS-MT nurses’ union, have secured increases to pay and other benefits. The base for setting public sector salaries will increase by 6% from 1 October this year and then by 2% from 1 April 2023. There will also be increases to the Christmas bonus, the payment of gifts to children and to holiday allowances. Negotiations for the next round of increases will take place next year at the latest in the third week of September.
The three trade union confederations ACV/CSC, ABVV/FGTB and ACLVB/CGSLB organised a day of action and strikes over pay, prices and welfare benefits on 9 November. The confederations are calling on the government and employers to negotiate pay increases to help address the cost-of-living crisis and in particular to changes in the law to provide trade unions with more room to manoeuvre when negotiating on pay rises. The unions also want government support to help with energy bills and for increase social security payments. The confederations are determined to defend the system of pay indexation
Following the failure of voluntary mediation between unions and the PBL private childcare employers’ organisation, over 500 more workers were set to join the strike action from Monday 14 November, taking the total to around 3600. The three unions involved – Fagforbundet, Delta and the education union – are calling on PBL to provide a pension scheme comparable to that covering the municipal sector and already applied in other parts of the private sector. If the current PBL scheme is maintained then workers could lose out by between NOK 50,000-70,000 (€4840-6780) a year. Mandatory mediation is
The CITUB and Podkrepa trade union confederations will come together in a national protest on 11 November. The union organisations are calling for action to protect purchasing power through higher pay and an increase in the national minimum wage. They have also called for a 15% pay rise for public sector workers. EPSU and the PSI board meeting in Geneva sent messages of support.
The vpod/ssp public services trade union is mobilising its members around the country in support of action to secure higher pay. The union is organising a rally in Bern on 18 November where the regional government is proposing a pay rise of only 2% leaving workers with an effective pay cut. A day of strike action has already taken place in Geneva on 12 October and further action is planned for both 3 and 24 November. Vpod/ssp members in Fribourg are demanding a 4% pay rise in the face of the 2.3% on offer. The union is collecting signatures for a petition which will be handed in on 4 December