Jan. 09, 2020 The HK Kommunal local government union is entering negotiations with the municipality of Esbjerg to discuss moving to a four-day week in the authority's job centre. However, the union is very sceptical about the prospects for the negotiations as it is in the context of the municipality aiming for major cost savings. HK Kommunal clearly states that a four-day week is not about forcing employees to do in four days all that they currently do in five days. The union says that Esbjerg is following the agreement reached in the Odsherred local authority in 2019 but there the focus was not on cost savings but on assessing the potential benefits of a shorter working week and the agreement was only finalised after several years of negotiations.
Jan. 07, 2020 School secretaries organised by the Fórsa trade union planned a one-day strike on 10 January and further industrial action in support of their campaign for pay justice (see EPSU CB News 17 and 18, September 2019). Nine out of 10 school secretaries are employed by their local school, are paid less than EUR 12500 a year and have precarious employment conditions. In contrast, one in 10 are directly employment by the department of education and have the appropriate pay and conditions of public servants. EPSU sent a message of solidarity.
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. 18, 2019 Strike action organised by the JHL public services union was instrumental in maintaining the collective agreement covering around 1000 employees of the cleaning and catering company Arkea, owned by the City of Turku. The company had switched to another employers' organisation so that it could sign up to a different and inferior collective agreement. This would have meant employees suffering cuts in pay of 15%-30%. After strike action by the 1000 employees at Arkea, a second strike also involving local transport workers was organised. With the threat of a third strike the company agreed to reinstate the original collective agreement.
Dec. 18, 2019 The public service federations of the CCOO confederation have called on the acting government to guarantee that the 2% pay increase, agreed as part of a three-year pay deal, will be paid on 1 January 2020 to all three million public sector workers. Formally a new government has yet to be confirmed and the acting public service minister is claiming that the increase cannot be confirmed but that it could be paid and backdated later in 2020. The union argues that the increase can be paid on the basis of a royal decree and say this needs to be done urgently as part of the union demands to win back rights cut or reduced during austerity.
Dec. 09, 2019
The Social Dialogue Committee of Local and Regional Governments adopts its New Work Programme 2020 – 2022
On November 27, the Social Dialogue Committee of Local and Regional Governments met in Brussels to discuss the past mandate and to adopt the new work programme for the next three years (2020 – 2022).
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.
Nov. 21, 2019 The younion and GÖD public service unions have successfully negotiated a new pay settlement for the public sector after four rounds of negotiations. The main increase in pay will be 2.25% from 1 January 2020 but with a minimum guaranteed increase of EUR 50 a month this will mean 3.05% for the lowest paid. Other payments and allowances will increase by 2.3%. This is above the 1.7% inflation rate used as a basis of the negotiations and ahead of the current inflation rate of 1.13%.
Nov. 20, 2019 Non-teaching staff in the education sector, members of the public service unions in the CGTP confederation, will be taking strike action on 29 November. Their main demands include an end to the recruitment ratio that restricts the number of new recruits when workers leave the service, an overall increase in staffing, measures to reduce precarious employment and improvements to pay and career progression.
Nov. 20, 2019 The government has confirmed the pay increase for public sector workers that was negotiated in September. There will be a flat rate CZK 1500 (EUR 59) increase per year, meaning on average a 7% increase. However, the government has also confirmed that it will abolish the pay table for lower paid staff. These include non-teaching staff in regional education, culture staff, secondary professions in social services and non-medical professions in hospitals. These will be transferred to another pay system meaning a additional increase of 3.5%. The increases take effect in January.
Nov. 07, 2019 On 29 October thousands of people took part in a protest rally outside parliament to call for urgent action in the education sector. The demonstration was supported by EPSU affiliate the Trade Union of the National Ukrainian Academy of Science. The wide range of demands included a call for an increase in education spending to 7% of GDP, implementation of approved pay scales and an increase in the sector minimum wage and action to prevent teacher dismissals, transfer to fixed-term contracts and increases in working hours.
Nov. 07, 2019 The three main trade unions in local government - UNISON, GMB and Unite - came together to lobby employers in advance of negotiations on pay. The unions' pay claim is for an increase of 10% and a minimum pay rate of £10 an hour (€11.60). They are also calling for a two hour reduction in the working week (with no loss of pay), one extra day of annual leave and the ending of the freeze on allowances. The unions argue that local government workers have seen a 22% cut in pay in real terms over the last 10 years.