EPSU expresses solidarity with striking Hungarian unions

(20 April 2016) Yesterday EPSU General Secretary Jan Willem Goudriaan wrote to Hungarian unions BDDSz and colleagues in the Social Workers Trade Union, Local Autonomous Trade Union – Miskolc and the Democratic Trade Union of Social Workers to express solidarity with their strike action today. The letter reads as follows: To: Viktória Szűcs, President, BDDSz And colleagues in the Social Workers Trade Union, Local Autonomous Trade Union – Miskolc, and Democratic Trade Union of Social Workers 19 April 2016 Dear Viktória, dear colleagues I would like to send you solidarity greetings for your strike tomorrow. I am writing on behalf of the EPSU Executive Committee which meets today in Brussels, which brings together 80 trade union leaders from 28 countries. It is understandable that after two and a half years of negotiations, strike action is necessary to send a clear message to the employers about the strength of feeling in support of your claims on pay and working time. Your union, the BDDSz, and the three other unions taking part in the action represent a very important group of workers in social services, including child care and care for the elderly, disabled and homeless. As in many other countries these workers, the majority of whom are women, are undervalued and provide essential services for inadequate reward. With average salaries in the social services sector in Hungary 35% below the average, there is clear justification for your 20% pay claim. We hope that your action tomorrow is successful and leads to a positive outcome. This will also be welcomed by many unions across Europe who are working hard to improve pay and conditions in this sector. Yours in solidarity Jan Willem Goudriaan EPSU General Secretary