After nearly nine months the JHL trade union managed to negotiate improvements to the pay and conditions of personal assistants but not before workers in the sector took strike action for the first time. A key aim for the union was to reduce the gap between pay for personal assistants and pay levels in the rest of the social care sector. There will be a €400 payment (adjusted for hours and length of service) to compensate for the delay in finalising the agreement. There will be different pay increases according to the pay level ranging from 3.98% to 6.77% on 1 January 2024 and then from 4.79% to 6.53% on 1 July 2024. The union is positive about the outcome which includes new pay levels and extra compensation for long shifts. Recognising the need for higher increases for this group of workers, JHL managed to negotiate increases that are above the overall trend in the labour market, something that may prove impossible in future if the government’s proposed labour market reforms are implemented.
Deal finally agreed for personal assistants
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The JHL trade union says that further industrial action may be necessary following the failure of conciliation to settle the dispute over a new collective agreement for personal assistants. Negotiations have been continuing since January and the last collective agreement expired at the end of April. JHL has been determined to secure a decent pay rise for worker in this sector characterised by low pay and high staff turnover. Meanwhile, industrial action by unions in the private social services sector – JHL, Tehy, SuPer and Jyty – helped deliver an improved offer from the employers and a 32
The Kommunal trade union has signed a new two-year agreement covering personal care assistants with the private care provider section of the Almega employers’ organisation. The agreement includes a 2.8% increase in the minimum wage from 1 February 2021 (to SEK 114.40 (EUR 11.30 an hour) and a further 2.3% on 1 July 2022 (to SEK 117.03 (EUR 11.56 an hour). However, pay rates in general will be set in local negotiations. The agreement sets the space for the negotiations but pay for individual workers will vary according to the local negotiations. The agreement includes several other provisions
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