Jan. 21, 2020 Unions in Norway and Sweden have put the focus on green issues in their current and planned negotiations with church employers. In Norway there is a commitment to address sustainability issues with the Norwegian church in an agreement that also includes measures to ensure a working environment that promotes health and also initiatives to reduce sickness absence. Meanwhile, in Sweden upcoming negotiations will include green measures along with a focus on a clearer process of pay determination and increased control over working time to improve work-life balance.
Dec. 19, 2019 The Kommunal municipal and health services union has set out some of the main demands that it will pursue in the upcoming collective bargaining with municipal employers. The union will aim for a 3% general pay rise with an extra 0.5% to be used at local level for specific groups of vocationally trained workers in health, child and other care. It wants vocationally trained temporary workers to be offered a permanent contract after 12 months and is calling for a number of measures on working time. Among a range of demands, Kommunal wants to ensure full-time work is the norm and argues that the employer should pay extra if it wants workers to do split shifts. It is demanding an extra day's leave for all workers and a 32-hour working week for night workers.
Dec. 06, 2019 Local government unions have negotiated a new agreement with the SKR and Sobona employer organisations that will deliver greater employment security for workers. The agreement will take effect on 1 May 2020 and will mean early identification of workers impacted by restructuring and who need training to help assist in gaining new skills and adapting to new jobs. The unions see this as key to avoiding lay-offs and essential for the rapid changes that are taking place in the labour market. Fixed-term workers will be covered by the agreement as will those off sick or going through rehabilitation.
Oct. 24, 2019 The Kommunal municipal workers' union has decided not to follow the wage coordination policy agreed by the LO trade union confederation. The union says that urgent action is needed to tackle staff shortages in childcare, health and other welfare services and that if it followed the LO target then workers in those sectors would only get an extra SEK 17 (EUR1.60). For Kommunal it is also important to address low pay in sectors dominated by women and the LO guideline would reduce the gender pay gap by only 0.1%.
Jul. 11, 2019 As reported by the newsletter in March, the municipal workers' union Kommunal has been negotiating a new agreement with the SKL employers' organisation to cover work during major emergencies. This initiative was taken following last summer's spate of forest fires. The agreement was finally signed at the end of June. It provides for an additional 120% of pay for each hour worked during the crisis and there is 150% for emergency overtime. There is a special procedure for determining what counts as a crisis. The agreement replaces the requirements of the Working Hours Act and will apply to all workers whether existing municipal employees or those taken on for the emergency.
May. 14, 2019 The Kommunal municipal workers' union has negotiated a new agreement covering part-time firefighters which includes significant improvements in pay and allowances that acknowledge the importance of this group of workers and the massive demands made on them recently as a result of widespread forest fires. There is a 30% increase for those working additional shifts, equivalent to SEK 1475 (EUR 137) a week. There is also extra pay for those on call during summer months and higher pay for longer shifts. There is also 5% addition on the extra payment for their first hour of work.
Mar. 14, 2019 The municipal workers' union Kommunal, along with other public service unions, is seeking to negotiate a collective agreement to clarify the conditions that apply to workers dealing with disasters. The union says that last year's forest fires required a massive response from the emergency services, particularly fire and rescue, and there was lack of clarity over how to apply certain rules, particularly those relating to working time and overtime. The union believes that a specific agreement should help and could apply to other groups of workers who may be affected such as those in the health services.
Nov. 23, 2018 Municipal workers' union Kommunal is calling on the government and all political parties to ensure that promised additional funding of SEK 5 billion (EUR 485 million) will be available to pay for extra staffing in the care sector. The union estimates that an additional 135000 jobs are needed in the short term. A large survey of Kommunal members found that almost one in two assistant nurses felt that the staffing problem in elderly care was so bad that it posed a risk to the elderly. There were similar concerns among childcare assistants about staffing shortages posing risks to children. The union sees this as an urgent and immediate problem but that even more investment will be needed for the longer term.
Aug. 31, 2018 The Kommunal municipal workers' union is celebrating a successful mobilisation of workers to secure changes to the pre-school curriculum. The first draft of the curriculum had nothing to say about the role of childcare workers and so Kommunal used its influence on the ministry of education while its members ensured that childcare workers were the biggest group providing input into the curriculum consultation. The revised curriculum now acknowledges the key role of childcare workers and is seen by the union as an important step in furthering the professional status of the occupation.
Aug. 02, 2018 Municipal workers' union Kommunal is highlighting a new report that contrasts workers' views of pay and conditions in the female-dominated care sector with those of workers in the male-dominated construction sector. In a wide range of assessments the views of care workers are much more negative than their counterparts in construction. While more than half of care workers have thought about changing jobs this applies to only 38% in construction while only 33% think that staffing levels are adequate in the care sector compared to 60% in construction. Half of care workers wouldn't recommend their career compared only 25% in construction while 80% of care workers say their employers don't do enough to raise the status of the profession compared to 25% in construction. The report's findings are being discussed within the union which will take them up with employers and politicians.
Jul. 10, 2018 An update of a survey by the Kommunal municipal workers' union has revealed differences between private and public eldercare in terms of pay and conditions. On average a full-time municipal worker in eldercare is paid SEK 2300 (EUR 225) more a month than their private counterpart. Private sector workers are also more likely to work part time (72%) and on fixed-term contracts (37%) than municipal workers (61% and 27% respectively). A survey of members also found that private sector workers feel less satisfied with the job and less motivated than municipal workers and while both sets of workers often work unpaid extra hours, this is a much bigger problem among private sector workers.
Jun. 01, 2018 Municipal workers' union Kommunal has negotiated a new two-year agreement with private care providers which includes general pay increases, additions for low-paid workers and several provisions on working time. The agreement follows the main municipal deal that provided for increases of 2% in 2018 and 2.3% in 2019 but in companies where average pay is below SEK 24000 (EUR 2330) a month in 2018 and below SEK 24480 (EUR 2380) in 2019, increases will be implemented as flat-rate amounts of SEK 490 (EUR 47) in 2018 and SEK 563 (EUR 55) in 2019. Assistant nurses will also get an extra 0.5%. Other measures cover arrangements for working after normal working hours, rest breaks and increasing the availability of full-time work.
May. 04, 2018 Municipal workers' union Kommunal has recorded the success it has had in improving the pay and status of assistant nurses. In 2016 and 2017 the union ensured that assistant nurses received a pay increase of SEK 1020 (EUR 97) worth around 4.3% while the overall increase in local government was SEK 520 (EUR 49) worth around 2.2%. Further progress followed in 2017 with SEK 180 (EUR 17) for assistant nurses on top of the general increase of SEK 530 (EUR 50), worth 2.2%.Kommunal notes that the gap between pay for nurses and engineers has closed but that more needs to be done to increase pay in sectors and jobs dominated by women. It is also targeting childcare workers in terms of improving their pay and status.