The SSSH trade union confederation has expressed its concerns about the new salary law covering civil servants. The law will abolish bonuses based solely on years of service and introduce new performance-related additions. The SSSH is worried that the performance-related elements of pay will be too subjective and allow heads of departments too much discretion over pay. The confederation is particularly concerned about the impact of women on maternity and/or sick leave who might miss out on being evaluated if they fail to meet the minimum requirement of six months’ work in a particular year.
The SSSH trade union confederation reports that the government has decided on pay cuts for public sector workers of at least 6% as from 1 April 2009. According to the confederation civil service unions had conceded to the pay cuts other public sector unions had rejected the government proposals. Read more at > SSSH (EN) And at SSSH (EN)
The government unilaterally cut salaries for public servants by amending the law that regulates basic pay in the sector, even though pay normally is subject to collective bargaining. The main public service unions have rejected the pay cut and also criticise the government for its unilateral action which, the unions argues, contravenes International Labour Organisation Convention 98 that guarantees the right to collective bargaining. The strikes were planned for 13 and 14 in the week leading up to local government elections across the country. Education workers were due to begin the strike on
Public sector unions called off strikes planned for 13 and 14 May and a national demonstration planned for 16 May. The unions secured an agreement on pay for 60,000 civil servants that will now be voted on by union members. If members reject the agreement then the unions will return to the negotiating table with the government. Civil servants’ pay will be increased in line with inflation from 1 January 2010 and they will also get a 6% increase once the economy has registered two consecutive quarters of growth. [Read more at > SSSH (HR)->http://www.sssh.hr/index.php?option=com_content&task=view
The Croatian government has increased VAT from 20% to 23% and introduced an additional 3% income tax on wages and pensions as part of its response to the current crisis. The SSSH trade union confederation attacked the proposals arguing that it would lead to a cut in consumption and so undermine economic growth. The 3% tax increase was supposed to be implemented on monthly salaries above 3000 kuna (€400) but there was further union anger when the finance minister suggested that the tax increase should be applied to all salaries. [Read more at > SSSH (EN)->http://www.sssh.hr/en/index.php?option
EPSU has written to the Croatian government expressing its concern about new legislation on determining pay in local government. EPSU’s local government affiliate, the Trade Union of State and Local Government Employees of Croatia, argues that the new law will undermine its right to negotiate pay for its members and that the government has failed to consult properly over the legislation.
EPSU has written to the President, Prime Minister and Minister for Public Administration in Croatia to protest at proposed changes to pay determination in local government. EPSU’s letter condemns the government for failing to consult with unions over the proposed changes and for planning to implement a form of pay determination that undermines the unions’ right to collective bargaining. EPSU’s letter was reported on the website of Vercernji, one of the main daily newspapers. [Read more at > Vercernji (HR)->http://www.vecernji.hr/vijesti/sindikalci-eu-mesica-premijerke-traze-objasnjenje-clanak
Four trade union confederations have been in negotiations with the government in order to prevent changes to the labour code that would undermine collective agreements. The confederations called for urgent talks when it emerged that the government was trying to implement the change to the labour code without any consultation with the unions. The unions are also trying to win broader support and are collecting signatures for a petition to have a referendum on the labour code changes. Read more at > SSSH (EN)
The union movement has been successful in reaching the required target of signatures to demand a referendum on changes to the Labour Code proposed by the government. The government had initially aimed to implement the changes without going through a proper process of negotiation and this would have lead to an undermining of collective agreements. The unions are now in a position where they can try to get the government around the negotiating table or insist on their right to proceed with the referendum. [Read more at > SETimes news website (EN)->http://www.setimes.com/cocoon/setimes/xhtml/en
Public sector unions have called off a series of actions next month that could have lead to a general strike on 10 December. The unions were demanding a referendum on trade union and employment rights but have now got the agreement from the government that a referendum will be held that would reduce the threshold of signatures required to call a referendum from 450,000 to 200,000. This will be on the same day as the referendum on joining the European Union. [Read more at > Bloomberg news website (EN)->http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-11-24/croatia-general-strike-canceled-on-referendum-accord
The government is in the process of implementing €260 million of cuts that will hit public sector jobs as well as certain wage benefits, overtime and expenses. The government is also laying off around 5000 workers on temporary contracts. Unions have been involved in negotiations over the cuts package are arguing that the government has to analyse where to reduce employee numbers and not implement random cuts. [Read more at > SETimes news website (EN)->http://www.setimes.com/cocoon/setimes/xhtml/en_GB/features/setimes/features/2012/03/06/feature-03] [And at > Balkan Insight news website (EN)->
After several rounds of bargaining, public sector unions have agreed a new four-year collective agreement that maintains pay levels and protects jobs. However, the government was looking to make savings and so the unions have agreed to a temporary cut to Christmas bonuses in 2012 and 2013 and a reduction in holiday grants next year. Read more at > Dalje news website (EN)
Health workers will be taking industrial action on 29 November in protest at cuts to the health sector and the unilateral decision by the government to end the collective agreement without any form of social dialogue. Read more at > HSSMS-MT (HR) And our solidarity message and letter of protest to Croatian government at > EPSU (EN, HR)
Public sector unions are consulting their members over organising a major day of action to protest at pay cuts and attacks on collective bargaining. The unions began their anti-government campaigning at this year's May Day rally and are planning an action that would effectively blocked key services to demonstrate the importance and value of public services to citizens and the economy. [Read more at news website > Dalje (EN)->http://dalje.com/en-croatia/unions-threaten-to-block-entire-public-sector/464962] [And further at > Dalje (EN)-> Dalje (EN)->http://dalje.com/en-croatia/ministers-tell
EPSU letterEPSU has sent a letter to the Croatian president expressing its support for the SLSN state and local government trade union which is concerned about draft legislation on pensions and retirement age in the public sector. The legislation will mean that the government can terminate contracts when civil servants reach 65 or 35 years of qualifying service. The union is worried that the government will use the new rules to force women to retire as part of a strategy to cut 12000 jobs from the civil service. In its letter EPSU highlights the importance of gender equality and particularly