Oct. 12, 2017 Responding to a government consultation the IMPACT public services union has called for a number of initiatives on on equal pay and gender equality, including requirements on employers to report on the gender pay gap and recognition of employers who take action to reduce gender equality. The union has submitted detailed proposals for action to address pay for non-teaching staff in education including pay reviews and job evaluation for a range of staff such as special needs assistants and administrative and library staff, the vast majority of whom are women.
Sep. 28, 2017
The Irish affiliates prepared a warm welcome to the EPSU Secretariat visiting Dublin to prepare Congress 2019. We met at an uplifting movement. After years of austerity, the unions reached an agreement last week
Sep. 26, 2017 Following votes across all the public sector unions, a majority (14), accounting for 80% by membership supported the new agreement on pay and conditions with three voting against. The three-year deal includes six pay increases (two targeted at the lower paid only) and will mean that the majority of public sector workers (73%) will see an overall increase of 7% by the end of the agreement. There is a range of other conditions that have been confirmed as part of the deal including the retention of outsourcing protections, the option to negotiate on returning to a shorter working week and provisions on work-life balance.
Aug. 16, 2017 The IMPACT and SIPTU trade unions are working hard to push childcare up the political agenda. IMPACT has just submitted a call for a major increase in childcare funding with an extra €125 million this year and €625 million over the next five years. The union wants to see the introduction of an agreed salary scale as an important contribution to the professionalisation of the sector. SIPTU is putting across similar demands in its Big Start campaign.
Aug. 02, 2017 Public services union IMPACT and general union SIPTU have welcomed a new parliamentary report that reveals the problems of low pay and poor working conditions in the early years sector. The unions are calling for increased investment and funding for the sector and action to tackle low pay with the need to set pay rates that recognise the responsibilities and qualifications of childcare workers, 98% of whom are women.
Jun. 26, 2017 Public service unions bargaining for better pay across Europe A pay rise for public service workers across Europe is the message that EPSU has sent out today – 23rd June – Public Services Day. Supported by the European Trade Union Confederation and in cooperation with the ETUCE teachers' federation, EPSU has highlighted some of the countries where public service workers continue to suffer from the effects of pay cuts and pay freezes. This special issue of EPSU's Collective Bargaining newsletter reports on some of the latest developments in pay negotiations and affiliates' campaigns, protests and other actions in support of those negotiations. Ireland: Public service workers suffered significant pay cuts in 2009 and 2010 with take-home pay also affected by a pensions levy. Unions are in the process of considering and consulting over a potential three-year pay deal which, if agreed, would mean a significant step towards pay restoration. The positions of the various unions can be seen at IMPACT, SIPTU, INMO, PSEU, CPSU and AHCPS. Czech Republic: The OSZPS health and social care union launched a campaign earlier this year exposing the pressing problem of low pay and overwork, with many workers leaving for better paid jobs in other sectors or other countries. The union has negotiated pay increases and new pay arrangements which will provide pay increases of between 9% and 23.5%. The highest increases will go to the lowest paid, following the abolition of the lowest three pay grades in the pay scale. UK: Public sector unions have been pressing for some time for an end to the 1% cap on public sector pay. This, combined with earlier pay freezes, has meant a major loss of purchasing power. Local government workers in Scotland are currently balloting over industrial action while in England and Wales they have launched their pay claim for 2018. Health workers are also angry over pay restraint and civil servants have seen their pay progression blocked as well as pay frozen. Latest updates can be found at: UNISON, Unite, GMB, RCN and PCS. Spain: The main federations in the public sector, FSC-CCOO and FeSP-UGT, are mobilising around the country to secure a pay rise and other changes to employment conditions to restore cuts implemented since 2010. The most recent action was in Valladolid. Meanwhile, both federations are also supporting protests and strike action around the world to improve pay for the thousands of workers in embassies, consuls and other bodies. More information on the action in public administration can be read at FSC and FeSP while updates on the international campaigns can be found here and here. Belgium: The non-profit/social profit sector is a major employer in Belgium and covers a wide range of health and social services. Unions have been campaigning and negotiating for some time to secure improvements to pay, hours and to increase employment in a sector facing major pressures from overwork. The latest action took place at the beginning of June and while some concessions have been made the unions say they are still a long way from achieving their key demands. Read more at CSC-CNE/LBC-NVK, CGSP/ABVV and CGSLB/ACLVB. Austria: The two main unions in the private health and social services sector, vida and GPA-djp, have been negotiating and campaigning for higher minimum wages in their sector agreements. They are aiming for all sector agreements to have a minimum of at least EUR 1500 and then going for higher targets as this minimum is achieved. Further information can be read at vida and GPA-djp. Netherlands: The FNV trade union has just negotiated a new 27-month deal covering 55000 workers in welfare and social services. There will be a 3.65% increase in pay over the course of the agreement and a one-off payment worth 0.5% in January 2019. There are also provisions to deal with increasing work pressure. For further details check FNV. There are plenty more reports on recent pay settlements on EPSU's website. Here you'll find updates on some of the main bargaining outcomes in Denmark, Germany, Italy, Norway, Slovakia, Sweden and Turkey and further updates from Austria, Ireland and the Netherlands. And there's lots of other bargaining news that can be searched by sector, subject and country.
Jun. 08, 2017 (June 2017) Details are emerging of the latest stage in negotiations between public sector unions and the government as they begin to unwind the austerity pay arrangements that saw pay cut and frozen and workers paying a pensions levy. The latest proposals are for a three-year deal running from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2020. There will be several pay increases over the period plus changes to the salary thresholds for the pensions levy. If agreed the deal would mean, for example, that a worker on EUR 30000 or less would be 7.4% better off by 2020.
May. 25, 2017 (May 2017) Trade unions are showing their support for a legislative initiative on gender pay information that is going through the Senate.The Gender Pay Gap Information Bill 2017, if made into law, would require organisations with more than 50 employees to publish regular wage surveys aimed at measuring their internal gender pay gaps.Unions believe that this will be a signifcant boost to the campaign to reduce the gender pay gap.
May. 11, 2017 (May 2017) Public sector trade unions want to see a swift move to negotiations following publication of the advisory report of the Public Services Pay Commission. The report focuses on average pay developments in the public and private sector and notes the extent to which public sector pay is on average lower than before the crisis. Public sector unions want to make significant progress towards recovering the lost purchasing power of many of their members since 2008.
Apr. 05, 2017 (April 2017) All public service workers on less than €65000 a year benefit from higher pay scales as of 1 April. The €1000 increase has been brought forward and has been implemented as part of the restoration of pay cuts that were implemented from 2009. Next month a public service pay commission is due to report and then pay negotiations will begin which will include further steps to restore the pay cuts.
Mar. 21, 2017 (March 2017) The IMPACT and SIPTU trade unions have organised a joint protest outside the parliament on 22 March calling for a restoration of pay and funding in community and voluntary services. The unions argue that workers in the sector have faced pay cuts, short-time working and unpaid overtime as they try to maintain services for vulnerable people. The unions want to ensure that the sector is not left behind as pay restoration gets underway in the rest of the public services.
Feb. 27, 2017 (March 2017) A strike threat by 10,000 support workers was called off following concessions from health service management. A key victory won by the SIPTU trade union was agreement to start a process of job evaluatoin for support workers. The issue of pay increments for interns would be dealt with in the forthcoming public sector pay negotiations. There was no movement on ensuring that support workers get the same concessions as nursing staff in emergency services but SIPTU said it would continue to pursue this through the labour courts.
Feb. 17, 2017 (February 2017) Health support staff organised by the SIPTU union have voted 94% in favour of strike action in a dispute over job evaluation and payments to interns. The union argues that after 15 months of negotiations health employers have failed to abide by specific provisions in the national public sector agreements and have granted certain concessions to nurses in emergency units that have been denied to health support staff.
Jan. 27, 2017 (January 2017) The SIPTU services union is balloting health workers in selected hospitals over industrial action. The union is unhappy that important provisions in the main public sector agreements, particularly job evaluation, have been applied to nurses in emergency departments but not to other workers. The union said that it opted for the ballot for action after 15 months of negotiations had failed to deliver any progress. The result of the ballot is due on 13 February.