EPSU was represented by colleagues from the Secretariat and from our Spanish member FSS-CC.OO and actively partipated in the conference "Women, Work and Cancer" organised on 4 and 5 December 2018 in Brussels.
Dec. 06, 2018
Dec. 05, 2018
New research published in the medical journal "The Lancet" ahead of the COP24 in Katowice shows that emissions, climate change and rising temperatures are already exposing people around the globe to unacceptably high health risks.
Dec. 05, 2018 The ETUI research organisation has published a new report and issue of its health and safety magazine, HesaMag, that both cover the risks of workplace cancers. As many as 100000 deaths a year are linked to workplace carcinogens but it is not just hazardous substances that are of concern. The ETUI publications also cover other risks such as night work which has been linked to higher risk of breast cancer with some specific cases affecting hospital staff. HesaMag also looks at the problems of getting proper recognition of the risks faced by workers in sectors like cleaning, maintenance and waste-recycling.
Dec. 04, 2018
On 3 December 2018 HOSPEEM and EPSU organised in the European Parliament in Brussels the social partners’ dissemination workshop focusing on the outcomes of two projects on health and safety and continuing professional developement.
Nov. 30, 2018 The GPA-djp and vida services unions have set out their list of demands in negotiations covering 100000 workers in the private healthcare sector. Along with a 6% pay rise (with minimum increase of EUR 150 to benefit the lower paid) the unions also want to see a reduction in hours to a standard 35-hour week without loss of pay and with additional jobs to maintain services. Other key demands include: avoiding split shifts, a sixth week of leave for all workers, earlier service to be taken into account, better pay for trainees and apprentices, part-time work for older workers and implementation of a key court ruling on travelling time.
Nov. 29, 2018
The current system of approval of medical devices is carried out by private agencies, dominated by business interests. EPSU calls for an urgent overhaul of these procedures.
Nov. 23, 2018
Access to quality health, care and education and fairer and better tax, benefit and social protection systems are among some of the positive elements in the European Commission’s 2019 Annual Growth Survey (AGS) that was published on 21 November.
Nov. 23, 2018 On 20 November the government announced compulsory arbitration to end a dispute between the NSF nurses' union and the NHO private employers' organisation. The union had called a strategic strike of 55 nurses on 25 October to protest against the NHO agreement having lower minimum pay and sickness benefit rates compared to the agreement negotiated with municipal employers. NSF has found examples of nurses' annual salaries in NHO employers that are NOK 30000-100000 (EUR 3200-10000) lower than in the public sector. After three weeks of strike action the NHO imposed a lockout on all 501 NSF members in NHO organisations prompting the government to intervene on the basis that the lockout posed a threat to patients' health.
Nov. 22, 2018 Health federations from the CGIL, CISL and UIL confederations organising doctors, hospital managers and vets joined the call for 24-hour strike action on 23 November. The unions are angry that the collective agreement for this group of workers remains unchanged after 10 years and is the last of the public sector agreements to be renewed. They are also calling for urgent action to deal with low pay, lack of resources and understaffing. The pressure on staff is set to increase with the average age of workers at 53 and an estimated 10000 doctors and managers set to retire over the next two years.
Nov. 22, 2018 The FNV trade union is refusing to sign a new collective agreement covering the ambulance sector arguing that it fails to deliver on pay and jobs. Indeed, the union says that pay rates in the agreement are below those paid by agencies and so the agreement will do nothing to stem the flow of workers out of direct employment in the sector. The FNV organised a petition signed by over 2000 ambulance staff calling for better pay and action on jobs and hours but the head of the ambulance service didn't event meet FNV members to accept the petition. A two-hour work stoppage was organised in the Rotterdam region on 21 November while work-to-rule actions continue across the country.
Nov. 22, 2018 After three rounds of negotiations, public sector unions have secured a minimum pay rise of 2.51% rising to 3.45% for lower paid workers. The increase will be implemented on 1 January 2019 and will include a 2.76% increase on other payments and allowances. The increases are ahead of the 2.02% inflation rate that formed the basis of the negotiations The younion public service union says that workers with a gross monthly salary of EUR 2000 will see pay rise by around 3.3% while those on EUR 3000 will get a 3.0% increase. The unions now want to see all regions implement the pay rise in full.
Nov. 08, 2018 INMO, the nurses' and midwives' union, is balloting its members over strike action in protest at low pay and staffing shortages. If agreed, there will be 24-hour strike with proposals already to escalate this to two days of action in the following week if the government fails to respond. INMO says that for every four nursing vacancies there is only one application and that the health service is paying employment agencies EUR 10000 for every nurse or midwife they recruit. It underlines the importance of tackling this issue to ensure the safety of patients which is under threat as a result of the current staff shortages.
Nov. 08, 2018 The LVSADA health union is extremely concerned that the state budget for 2019 will not include promised funding to cover pay increases for health workers. The union has called for rises of around 20% as an essential step to try to stem the loss of workers to other sectors or to other countries. LVSADA believes that the outgoing government made the promise as an election ploy and is now saying it has no responsibility for the budget. Following elections in October negotiations are underway to form a new government.
Nov. 08, 2018 ADEDY, the public services confederation, has called a 24-hour strike for 14 November. It is calling on the government to negotiate over a gradual process of pay restoration. ADEDY says that civil servants have already seen pay cut by 40% and now tax rises and reductions in tax allowances will further reduce take home pay. It is calling for immediate pay rises and the restoration of the 13th and 14th month salaries as initial steps in this process. The strike demands also cover the urgent need to recruit additional permanent staff, for measures on skills and training rather than a new evaluation system, improvements to pensions and a stop to privatisation.
Nov. 08, 2018 Health unions in Bulgaria signed a new collective agreement on 8 November which includes substantial pay increases for workers across the sector. Compared to the pay rates set in the 2016 collective agreement, the minimum wage for nurses, midwives and laboratory technicians will increase by 22% from 900 lev (EUR 460) to 1100 lev (EUR 560) a month. The basic rate for doctors and pharmacists will increase by just under 30% from 1200 lev (EUR 615) to 1550 lev (EUR 790). Higher increases of up to 50% will be paid to medical specialists.