May. 02, 2019
Squares, parks and streets filled with workers and union members across Europe and beyond this first of May.
May. 01, 2019 EPSU is running a series of training seminars this year and next to provide support for affiliates who are facing up to the challenges of digitalisation. The five regional seminars will be open to all EPSU affiliates with a focus on participants who are involved in collective bargaining. The first seminar will take place in Bucharest on 24-25 September, followed by one in Lisbon on 19-20 November. Further details (in 19 languages) of the training project which is receiving financial support from the European Commission can be found on the EPSU website. The invitations to the first seminar will be sent out in June.
Apr. 30, 2019 Trade unions in local government have given the VNG employers' organisation until 10am on 1 May to respond to their main demands or face action across the sector which employers 160000 workers. After six rounds of bargaining, trade unions broke off negotiations as the VNG failed to come up with any offer close to the unions' demands which include a real pay increase and measures to address workers' health and wellbeing, especially older workers.
Apr. 30, 2019 The OSZSP health union met the prime minister and health minister on 17 April to raise serious concerns about pay in the sector. The union says that many workers are not being paid special allowances worth CZK 2000-5000 (EUR 80-200). Instead some are getting only CZK 1000-1200 (EUR 40-50) and others nothing at all. The prime minister expressed surprise and asked for details of the hospitals that are failing to pay the correct amounts. The OSZSP also wants action to ensure consistent payment of basic salaries across the sector and raised the continuing problem of low pay in social services. The union reminded the government of the high level of dissatisfaction with pay and the serious staff shortages that are undermining service provision in some areas.
Apr. 12, 2019
On 28 March 2019 EPSU participated, together with its representatives of the two national affiliates from Romania, Sanitas, and Croatia, HSSMS-MT, in the kick-off meeting of the joint HOSPEEM-EPSU project focusing on strengthening social dialogue in the hospital sector that will run in 2019 and 2020.
Mar. 28, 2019 The 2019 edition of Benchmarking Europe, published by the European Trade Union Institute, reveals the continuing impact of austerity with data showing that workers in eight countries are, on average, worse off in real terms than they were 10 years ago. The eight countries are Greece, Croatia, Cyprus, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Hungary and the UK. In a further two countries - Finland and Belgium - average wages are at the same level as 10 years ago, taking account of inflation.
Mar. 27, 2019 The Fagforbundet public services union is working to ensure that its members benefit from provisions in collective agreements - in this case in the municipal sector and covering childcare - that ensure that workers are paid the appropriate wage for their experience and qualifications. Workers can get up to six years of service-related pay if they have been away from work because of caring responsibilities. Migrant workers can also get qualifications and experience from other countries taken into account. The union gives the example of a childcare worker from Lithuania who saw a NOK 104000 (EUR 10700) increase in annual pay once her seven years of home caring responsibilities and six years of childcare work in Lithuania were taken into account. A cleaner got the same increase once the local authority checked that she had had to spend seven years caring for her husband and once they had corrected her service details.
Mar. 21, 2019
Tripartite Social Summit on eve of the European Council – More investment needed in public services say unions
Speaking on public services the lack of investment was highlighted by the ETUC delegation. This results in staff shortages, in lack of infrastructure.
Mar. 15, 2019 Four trade union organisations - CGT, FO, FSU and Solidaires - are joining with two student organisations - UNEF and UNL - in a national demonstration and strike action on 19 March focusing on pay, social protection and a range of other key demands. The unions want negotiations across the sectors for a general pay rise along with an increase to the national minimum wage.
Mar. 15, 2019 The Forsa public services union is arguing that the current public sector agreement needs to address cost-of-living increases and occupation and grade-specific claims. Recent pay rises have brought pay back to 2008 levels but don't take account of the 6% rise in prices while there is a range of demands from different groups of workers that have not been addressed in earlier negotiations. This is reflected in the current dispute involving nurses and midwives which is now being addressed in the Labour Court. The Court had ruled earlier in favour of a pay rise for nurses and midwives and other measures to address issues like safe staffing levels. But the union, INMO, has returned to the court following a government offer that includes what the union sees as wholly unacceptable proposals on contracts
Mar. 15, 2019 The FP-CGIL, CISL-FP and UIL-FPL public service federations are stepping up their mobilisation of members in private health care in response to the latest statement from the AIOP and ARIS employer organisations. It is now 12 years since the signing of the last collective agreement and the employers, whose member organisations have a combined turnover of around EUR 3.9 billion, have said that they will provide no money for pay increases. AIOP has said that renewing the agreement is a priority but the employers want any additional costs to be fully funded by the public sector.
Mar. 01, 2019 The European Trade Union Institute has published updates on several countries in its Reforms Watch database. Latest news covers Greece (minimum wage), Slovenia (public sector pay), Portugal (strike activity) and Ireland (legislation to ban zero-hour contracts). There are also updates on Luxembourg, Malta, Belgium, Cyprus and Hungary.
Feb. 27, 2019 The YS group of unions is looking for substantial real wage growth in this year's negotiations on pay. Its recent conference on wages highlighted the fact that while wages increased on average by 2.8% in 2018, this marked only a small increase in real terms as prices rose by 2.7%. In fact the union points out that on average wages in real terms are no different from five years ago and so with unemployment falling and a relatively positive outlook it is time for trade unions to push for higher wage growth.