Remunicipalisation, Central government
Bringing services back in-house
EPSU has consistently argued in favour of direct provision of public services to guarantee the quality of services and the quality of employment for workers delivering those services. Under the heading of remunicipalisation EPSU supports and promotes any initiatives to bring services back in-house where they have been privatised along with moves to have new services run by municipalities and other public authorities. EPSU is part of a network, coordinated by the Transnational Institute that has published research highlighting recent trends in remunicipalisation and insourcing.
The government’s initial offer of a pay increase of 0.9% for public service workers for 2022 is well below the demands of the main trade unions. Trade unions in the Frente Comum federation are calling for a minimum EUR 90 a month increase from 1 January 2022 with a minimum wage set at EUR 850. The SINTAP trade union has claimed an increase of 2.5%. The unions have a range of other demands relating to meal allowances, the pay structure and career development, arduous work, precarious employment, changes to the performance management system and working time.
The three public service federations – Fp Cgil, Cisl Fp and Uil Pa – organised two days of protests on 13 and 14 October in Naples, Milan and Rome. The mobilisation was about the crisis facing the justice sector with serious staffing shortages and excessive workloads, compounded by inadequate facilities and equipment. The unions argue that workers have been left out of the justice debate as politicians focus on legal reform while ignoring the situation facing the staff who are supposed to uphold and implement the law. Further mobilisations are planned if there is no response from the minister
A new collective agreement covering state workers is now subject to a vote by members. The FNV trade union is pleased with elements of the agreement which it says is better than the previous offer but argues that the final pay offer from the employers is too low. The main elements of the deal include: a 2% wage increase as of 1 July 2021; a one-off payment of €300 in December; a one-off and structural work-from-home allowance; the integration of cleaners into the pay structure and an extra amount for employees on irregular shifts. Union members will now have until the end of the month to
The public service federations in the CCOO and UGT have been angered by the government’s decision to call a meeting at short notice on 5 October rather than initiate a proper process of collective bargaining. The unions argues that the government simply wanted union endorsement for next year’s budget without taking account of key trade union demands relating to the recovery of purchasing power, the 35-hour working week and elimination of the replacement rate that is hampering efforts to reduce temporary employment. The unions also reject the government pay offer of 2% for 2022 which they say
On 27 August the KESK public services confederation organised a national strike in protest at the collective agreement signed by the government and the Memur Sen trade union. KESK has a range of key demands which the agreement fails to address and is angry that it was shut out of the negotiations. The confederation argues that the pay rises foreseen in the agreement are inadequate to ensure protection against inflation and it doesn’t include any measures to deal with employment security, workplace democracy or the right to proper collective bargaining. EPSU sent a solidarity message.
The FeSP-UGT federation and the public service federations in the CCOO confederation have called on the government to enter negotiations on pay and conditions. The last three-year agreement covering three million public sector workers ran from 2018-2020 and for 2021 the government unilaterally implemented a 0.9% pay increase. The unions are calling for a pay rise for 2022 and beyond along with action on jobs to ensure the quality of public services and also measures to reduce precarious employment, particularly in regard to the long-running challenge to reduce temporary employment. They also
(Brussels, 2 September 2021) Today, the Court of Justice of the European Union issued its verdict on the case EPSU (the European Federation of Public Service Unions) brought against the European Commission.
Nearly nine out of 10 workers in Scottish government support the move to a four-day week according to research by the Autonomy think tank. The report’s findings suggest that moving to a four-day week would boost productivity to such an extent that many departments could make the change without having to employ new staff. The research shows a range of benefits for the government, including better retention and recruitment of staff, being seen as a pioneer in setting new working time standards for the Scottish economy; and having a healthier workforce. PCS, the main civil service union, which is
The KESK public sector confederation has rejected the offer made by the government for public sector wide pay increases in 2022 and 2023. The Ministry of Labour offered increases of 5% and 6% in 2022 and two increases of 6% in 2023 with further adjustments for inflation. However, KESK has already highlighted the extent to which public sector pay has fallen behind inflation (currently over 17%) and it also questions whether the official inflation figure really reflects living costs for most workers. However, the confederation is also disappointed that the public sector pay talks fail to address
On 13 July all nine trade union federations in the public service signed a new agreement on telework covering the whole of the public sector. The framework agreement requires employers across the three pillars of the public sector – local authorities, ministries and hospital services – to begin negotiations to implement the agreement at local level by 31 December this year. The agreement covers all the key issues relating to the voluntary nature and reversibility of telework, health and safety, gender equality, data security and privacy and working time and the right to disconnect. The
The ver.di services union has negotiated a collective agreement on digitalisation that will cover 126000 workers in the federal government and come into effect on 1 January 2022. It will be applied whenever there are significant changes in workplace requirements or conditions as a result of digitalisation. The union argues that the agreement will allow workers to benefit from the digitalisation process while protecting them from possible risks. It includes mechanisms for securing jobs and providing necessary training while guaranteeing wages. Employees whose job effectively disappears as a
The Fórsa and SIPTU public service unions have welcomed the government’s new ‘Blended Working Policy Statement,’ which would see the civil service switch from pandemic-related remote working provisions to long-term ‘blended working’ arrangements between September 2021 and March 2022. However, both unions want to see a rapid roll-out across the entire public service, rather than being confined to Government departments and agencies. They also underline the importance of some of the statement’s key points such as the commitment to a consistent approach and to transparency and fairness on access