Jun. 21, 2019 Employees of the multinational contractors Aramark and ISS are continuing their strike action at the head office of the government's Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in London. The latest five-day action by catering, cleaning, security and portering staff is to put pressure on both the contractors and the government department to pay the £10.55 an hour (EUR 11.55) living wage for London. EPSU sent a solidarity message.
Jun. 21, 2019 The Fp Cgil, Cisl Fp and Uil Pa public service trade unions are organising strike action in the Ministry of Justice on 28 June. The unions say that the action is necessary to force the government to act to address massive staff shortages. By 2021 the Ministry will face a 50% staff shortfall, compounded by an ageing workforce. The unions also say that the situation is not helped by the fact that justice workers are among the worst paid in the public sector.
May. 28, 2019 The SINTAP public services union and other unions in the FESAP federation are taking strike action on 30 May in protest at government plans to change the career structure for workers in a range of state inspectorates. These cover inspectors dealing with social security, working conditions, national resources and other services. The unions argue that the changes will leave some workers worse off, looking at as much as 10 years without a promotion or pay increase. They say it will hamper career development, making it almost impossible to reach the highest grades. The unions' view is that it would be better to stick with the current arrangements.
May. 23, 2019
Public service unions take European Commission to court for the first time seeking to enforce social dialogue
On 23 May the European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) will be before the General Court of the European Union bringing a claim against the European Commission for breaching rules on social dialogue (TFEU article 155.2).
May. 21, 2019
On 23 May The European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) will stand before the General Court of the European Union bringing a claim against the European Commission for breaching the rules on social dialogue.
May. 21, 2019
Public service unions in the UK welcomed the decision by the Ministry of Justice on 16 May to return 80% of privatised probation services in England and Wales to public sector ownership and control.
May. 15, 2019 The public service federations within the CCOO confederation have called on the government to pay an additional increase of 0.25% for 2019 that would take the increase this year to 2.5% and ensure an increase in purchasing power for public sector workers. The 0.25% is part of an agreement where pay increases are linked to increases in economic output (GDP). The unions are concerned that the government has known since January that the payment would be due but has taken no action. The CCOO federations are also giving further impetus to their campaign to restore rights lost under austerity covering wages, jobs, the 35-hour week, medical leave, equality plans and partial retirement.
May. 10, 2019 Hundreds of thousands of public service workers joined demonstrations around the country on 9 May as part of national strike action and protests against government plans for public sector reform. An estimated 30000 took part in the main demonstration in Paris, bringing together nine trade union federations in the public sector and indicating the extent of trade union unity in opposition to job cuts, pay freezes and initiatives to undermine employment security and trade union rights. The unions are demanding a proper process of social dialogue over the government proposals which are due to be presented to parliament on 13 May.
May. 01, 2019 The latest issue of the Journal of International Trade Union Rights features a number of articles examining the extent to which public service workers find their rights restricted in relation to organising, collective bargaining or the right to take collective action. Nadja Salson of EPSU contributed an article highlighting two developments. First, is EPSU's legal action against the European Commission over its failure to put forward the information and consultation agreement in central government to the European Council for transposition into a directive and the second is the loophole in the Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions Directive that allows Member States to exclude public service workers from its provisions. The journal also includes an article based on the right to strike factsheets covering 34 countries and produced for EPSU by the European Trade Union Institute.
Apr. 15, 2019 Nine trade union organisations are now supporting the national public sector strike on 9 May - CFDT, CFTC, CFE-CGC, CGT, FAFP, FO, FSU, Solidaires, and UNSA. The key demands are for the government to stop its plan for a transformation of the public service that involves around 120000 job cuts. The unions are also calling for an end to the pay freeze and a pay increase for all public sector workers. The unions claim that the government talks about the importance of the work of civil servants while at the same time undermining their rights, benefits and working conditions. They also say that there has been a failure to negotiate properly with the unions and to take account of the alternative proposals they have for the public sector.
Mar. 28, 2019 Public service unions organised a national protest on 27 March, the day that draft legislation on public service reform was presented to the Council of Ministers. The unions oppose the main reforms that they fear will lead to increased use of workers on contracts rather than civil service status and plans to cut 120000 jobs. Most unions are also planning further action with 9 May as the date for demonstrations and strikes. Meanwhile, customs workers have been on a work-to-rule. While the impact of Brexit is one of the drivers of the action, the unions argue that there are other long-term problems that need addressing. Around 6000 jobs have been cut from the service over the last 10 years while the work has become more complex with increasing demands related to terrorism. Failure to invest to in up-to-date equipment has also contributed to the problems faced by border workers.
Mar. 27, 2019 Prison unions, ACAIP, FeSP-UGT and FSC-CCOO, organised lunchtime protests outside every prison service establishment on 20 March. They were reacting to the knife attack on a member of staff at the Soto del Real prison in Madrid. The unions argue that prison service management is failing to take adequate action to tackle increasing violence across the service, noting that the prison service has been condemned by the Central Labour Inspectorate for failing to properly apply occupational health legislation.