Nov. 21, 2019 The FNV, NU'91 and other unions representing hospital workers organised the first ever day of national industrial action in the sector on 20 November. Workers in 119 institutions took part, delivering the equivalent of a Sunday service but maintaining emergency provision. The unions are trying to put pressure on the employers to deliver a new collective agreement that addresses pay, workloads, pensions and work-life balance issues. There was also a national event in Utrecht where a petition was delivered to the head of the employers' organisation. EPSU sent a solidarity message.
Nov. 21, 2019 Around 5000 protestors joined a demonstration on 14 November organised by the FPSU trade union confederation. The trade union demands concerned the draft Budget for 2020 and the Labour Code. Unions are concerned about changes to the law that deprive civil servants and public sector workers of rights to social protection upon dismissal and planned changes that contain discriminatory rules on the employment rights of employees and threatens their collective protection. The unions also have specific demands on minimum and living wages and pensions.
Nov. 21, 2019 The younion and GÖD public service unions have successfully negotiated a new pay settlement for the public sector after four rounds of negotiations. The main increase in pay will be 2.25% from 1 January 2020 but with a minimum guaranteed increase of EUR 50 a month this will mean 3.05% for the lowest paid. Other payments and allowances will increase by 2.3%. This is above the 1.7% inflation rate used as a basis of the negotiations and ahead of the current inflation rate of 1.13%.
Nov. 20, 2019 The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has just produced a report emphasising the role that collective bargaining can play in meeting new labour market challenges. The report highlights the positive role that collective bargaining, particularly coordinated bargaining, can play in reducing inequality and supporting economic growth. It notes that some adaptation is required, particularly action to reduce the number of non-standard workers who are not covered by collective agreements. The report also argues that "state regulations need to leave space for collective bargaining, and local representative structures and promote (or not at least not discourage) self-organisation by workers and employers."
Nov. 20, 2019 Non-teaching staff in the education sector, members of the public service unions in the CGTP confederation, will be taking strike action on 29 November. Their main demands include an end to the recruitment ratio that restricts the number of new recruits when workers leave the service, an overall increase in staffing, measures to reduce precarious employment and improvements to pay and career progression.
Nov. 20, 2019 The government has confirmed the pay increase for public sector workers that was negotiated in September. There will be a flat rate CZK 1500 (EUR 59) increase per year, meaning on average a 7% increase. However, the government has also confirmed that it will abolish the pay table for lower paid staff. These include non-teaching staff in regional education, culture staff, secondary professions in social services and non-medical professions in hospitals. These will be transferred to another pay system meaning a additional increase of 3.5%. The increases take effect in January.
Nov. 19, 2019 The FOA public services union has warned of the consequences of failing to maintain minimum staffing levels in childcare. It says that a survey of parents using childcare already reveals that 18% of parents have been affected by falling standards and reduced opening hours. FOA also quotes a television documentary that highlights the benefits to children of ensuring the minimum level of one childcare teacher per six children. Apart from the benefits to children the union also highlights the loss in tax revenue as the impact of fewer childcare places and reduced opening times equates to 5000 fewer workers in full-time employment.
Nov. 19, 2019 Nine union organisations representing health and social care workers along with professional organisations and health campaign groups came together again on 14 November calling for urgent action to tackle the crisis in the health system. Along with demands for increased funding, unions were calling for immediate measures to deal with staff shortages and increased pay for all health and social care staff. EPSU sent a message of solidarity and a delegation, including trade unionists from Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands joined the demonstration. Some unions have already made a call for further action on 5 December to coincide with a national protest over pensions.
Nov. 19, 2019 After a series of warning strikes involving over 3000 workers, public service union ver.di has negotiated a new 28-month agreement covering 28000 employees of four university clinics in the Baden-Württemberg region. The deal is worth 7.1% paid in two stages (1 November 2019 and 1 February 2020). As a result of legislation that provides funding to ensure increased staffing of nursing and care personnel, these workers will get an extra EUR 200 a month. But ver.di has negotiated with the four hospitals to cover more occupations than those specified in the law.
Nov. 18, 2019 The three main firefighter unions - FP CGIL VVF, FNS CISL and UIL PA VVF - organised a day of protests and strike action on 15 November with a range of demands. They want to see the work of firefighters properly recognised in terms of both pay and social protection. They also want action on health and safety, particularly in relation to the occupational risks and diseases they face. The unions want the government to ensure adequate funding not just for the renewal of the collective agreement but also to boost recruitment. Further action was planned for 21 November.
Nov. 07, 2019 Unions in the health sector, including Fagforbundet, YS and unions represented by LO-Stat, are celebrating a positive ruling by the National Wages Board. The ruling means that pensions will now be based on all earnings which ensures that part-time workers will be entitled to pensions for the first time. The Board also endorsed the pay rise that ensures that all workers benefit from an increase already agreed for nursing staff. The unions' strike action had been brought to a halt in the summer when the government claimed it posed a threat to health and referred the matter to the National Wages Board.
Nov. 07, 2019 Members of the PCS civil service union are continuing their long-running campaign for union recognition at the Interserve outsourcing company which provides maintenance and cleaning services at the Foreign Office. Four further days of strike action were planned for 7, 8, 11 and 12 November. Meanwhile members of the UNISON public service union are planning two days of strike action at three hospitals run by the Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust. Around 1000 cleaners, caterers, porters, security and estates staff are threatened with outsourcing as part of a national trend in the health sector to set up wholly-owned subsidiaries. UNISON is campaigning against the initiative.
Nov. 07, 2019 The CCOO-Sanidad health federation organised a national mobilisation on 6 November to put pressure on the national health service to deliver on reforming the pay system that covers around 500,000 workers. The union wants to see major changes in the pay structure on the basis of a professional qualification framework that recognises the skills and competences of a wide range of occupations. It argues that this is necessary to establish appropriate salary levels that should provide higher pay for many health workers.
Nov. 07, 2019 Following the national protests and strike action on 8 and 15 October, health and social care trade unions are building for the next national day of action on 14 November. The unions are calling for increased funding for health and social services and measures to increase staffing and improve the pay and conditions of workers in the sectors. On the same day unions representing workers in the finance ministry and customs will be protesting over plans for major restructuring that poses a threat to jobs and services.
Nov. 07, 2019 On 29 October thousands of people took part in a protest rally outside parliament to call for urgent action in the education sector. The demonstration was supported by EPSU affiliate the Trade Union of the National Ukrainian Academy of Science. The wide range of demands included a call for an increase in education spending to 7% of GDP, implementation of approved pay scales and an increase in the sector minimum wage and action to prevent teacher dismissals, transfer to fixed-term contracts and increases in working hours.