(January 2017) There was strong support for a health workers' strike on 20 January with unions calling for action on pay, career development and the application of the 35-hour week for all public service workers. On 3 February non-teaching staff in schools and kindergartens plan a 24-hour strike with demands to tackle precarious employment, to increase recruitment and create a proper career structure.
Environment/Climate Change, Precarious employment
Responding to the challenge of climate change
Climate change, the largest single threat to current and future generations, is posing fundamental challenges for public services and public service workers. In recent years, we have seen extreme weather events, flooding and forest fires for example, leading to loss of life and widespread damage and destruction of buildings and infrastructure. Our members across many services have been part of the immediate and longer term response – in emergency and rescue services, energy and water, local and regional government. EPSU has been working hard to influence policies at global and European level aimed at decarbonising our economies and calling for a shift away from growth at all costs. It is essential that we achieve a more sustainable society is achieved through a just transition whereby no one is left behind.
This briefing, produced for EPSU's 2019 Congress, sets out the federation's recent activity on climate change and current priorities. EPSU has published research focusing on some of the key issues and policy developments including its position on the EU's Green Deal, the failure of energy liberalisation to address climate change and an analysis of action on climate change adaptation.
(January 2017) White-collar union Vision has set out its main bargaining demands in its negotiations with the KFS organisation for local enterprises. The union wants to see competitive salaries and action to improve well-being at work. It also wants employees to be on permanent contracts with employers providing objective justifications for any use of fixed-term contracts of agency staff. Longer paid holidays, individual working time accounts and shorter hours for workers in establishment requiring 24-hour cover are also among the demands.
Trump’s decision to withdraw from Paris Climate Change Agreement underlines importance Just Transition
The US government has announced it will withdraw the US from the Climate Change Agreement signed in December 2015. The US President denied any responsibility of the US for historic and current levels of carbon emissions.
(4 November 2016) With governments representing 55% of global CO2 emissions having now committed to the Paris Climate Agreement it enters into force 4 November 2016. The governments that signed
(May 2017) A new report from the ETUI research institute explodes the myth that deregulation of employment protection legislation creates either economic growth or an increase in jobs. The report examines evidence from 10 countries (Spain, Italy, Estonia, Slovakia, Poland, Germany, France, Denmark, and the UK) and shows that the main impact in these measures has been the spread of precarious employment conditions.
(May 2017) The STAL local government union has called on the government to allow local authorities to take immediate action to tackle precarious employment in the sector. The union says that an ordinance aimed at the state sector doesn't go far enough and that local authorities should be allowed to take the initiative now to reduce various forms of temporary work and provide permanent contracts to workers who are doing permanent tasks but have been appointed on short-term contracts.
(July 2017) The three public service federations - FP CGIL, CISL FP and UIL FPL - organised a joint mobilisation on 3rd July outside the offices of the Ministry of Labour to call for action over the future of employment centres across the country. The unions are calling for guarantees for the workers in these centres in terms of jobs and wages as well as proper investment in the provision of employment services to citizens. Around 8000 permanent staff and 2000 temporary workers are affected by the uncertainty facing the centres.
(March 2017) The waste and environment section of the FNV trade union highlights the findings of a recent report that found more than a third of workers (34%) in the waste sector working on precarious contracts. The union stresses in particular that this raises serious safety issues. There are problems of ensuring that agency workers, for example, get all the appropriate protective clothing and appropriate training. The union also argues, as in a recent case, that precarious workers are more likely to be involved in workplace accidents, often taking too many risks in trying to show they are