Nov. 19, 2019 After a series of warning strikes involving over 3000 workers, public service union ver.di has negotiated a new 28-month agreement covering 28000 employees of four university clinics in the Baden-Württemberg region. Following a very poor offer from the employers, ver.di is now consulting members over a deal worth 7.1% paid in two stages (1 November 2019 and 1 February 2020). As a result of legislation that provides funding to ensure increased staffing of nursing and care personnel, these workers will get an extra EUR 200 a month. But ver.di has negotiated with the four hospitals to cover more occupations than those specified in the law.
Nov. 05, 2019 Workers at the Schildautal hospital in Seesen in Lower Saxony are continuing their strike action to secure a collective agreement despite management's aggressive anti-strike measures (see EPSU Collective Bargaining News 19, October). Public services union ver.di has condemned the hospital owners, Askeplios, for failing to agree a minimum service agreement, threatening workers with the sack and offering strike-breaking bonuses. Further action was taken on 1 November despite the employer's intimidation and on the basis of the union's own proposal for minimum service.
Oct. 22, 2019 Public service union ver.di has undertaken a major survey covering over 210000 workers in the public sector and just under 18000 in private and non-profit health and social care. The survey found that 92% of workers thought it important to have a choice between more pay and fewer hours and 57% would actually swap a pay increase for an hours cut. Overall of those wanting shorter hours, 45% wanted to work fewer days while 30% wanted a working time account to allow for more holidays or the option to retire earlier. The union will consult further in the lead up to next year's public sector negotiations.
Oct. 09, 2019 Over 200 staff at the Schildautal hospital in Seesen in Lower Saxony took strike action on 4 October in defiance of threats from management that they would be dismissed. The hospital is owned by Asklepios, the second biggest private hospital group in Germany. The health union ver.di wants to negotiate a collective agreement that would bring pay in line with the public sector. However, the company not only refuses to negotiate but has threatened strikers with the sack and promised bonuses to strike breakers. The recent ver.di congress sent a message of solidarity to workers at the hospital.
Oct. 01, 2019
Increasing the minimum wage to 12 Euros was one of the demands that rallied the delegates to the German union’s Congress of Verdi.
Sep. 26, 2019 The ver.di health union at the KfH, a national institute for dialysis and kidney transplants employing around 7000 workers, is planning its next pay claim with a view to closing the pay gap with the main public sector agreement which is between 5%-11% depending on the occupation. The union is also aiming to negotiate several improvements in pay and conditions that will apply only to ver.di members. The main demand will be for an 8% pay rise covering the 12-month period from 1 January 2020. The union also wants a system of variable payments to be replaced with a single fixed holiday payment of ERU 1500, again specifically for ver.di members. The claim also includes improvements for trainees.
Sep. 13, 2019 Members of the ver.di public services union employed by the private healthcare company Asklepios are taking action across the country to try to secure collective agreements. Only a third of the company's 46000 workers are covered by an agreement with most facing unilateral decisions by management on their pay. In some facilities this means employees are being paid EUR 1000 a month less than those doing the equivalent job in a public sector hospital. In some cases workers have rejected higher pay offers from management and demanded that the union be able to negotiate a collective agreement.
Aug. 23, 2019 Following talks with the BVAP eldercare employers' organisation, the ver.di services union has confirmed that both parties are committed to negotiate a sector collective agreement by the end of the year. They have also made it clear that they want the labour ministry to extend the agreement to cover all employers in the sector to prevent those paying low wages from undercutting the agreement. Ver.di and BVAP believe this is essential to ensuring decent pay in the sector and making occupations eldercare more attractive to workers.
Aug. 08, 2019 The WSI trade union-linked research organisation has published its half-year analysis of pay settlements and noted that the average increase of 3.2% is slightly up on last year's 3.0%. With inflation averaging 1.6% this means average real wage increases of 1.6%. WSI says this confirms an upward trend in pay and notes that in the first half of this year some of the large agreements have registered the highest increases, including engineering (4.1%), iron and steel (3.9%) and regional government (3.6%).
Aug. 07, 2019 Services union ver.di has managed to organise and make progress towards a collective agreement in the uni-assist agency that checks applications to universities from overseas students. The agency was set up in 2003 and now has 300 employees, with ver.di membership now at 60% of those on permanent contracts. The union is aiming to secure an agreement in line with the public sector agreement and is focusing on a number of specific issues including a reduction to a 38.5 hour week from 40 hours. The agency is now a guest member of the Berlin municipal employers' organisation but without committing to sign up to the sector agreement. Ver.di has drafted a collective agreement and hopes to make progress in negotiations with the agency but doesn't rule out action, including warning strikes, to put pressure on the employers.
Jul. 24, 2019 Services union ver.di has welcomed the establishment of a new employers' organisation - BVAP - covering the eldercare sector. The union will aim to begin talks as soon as possible over a collective agreement and is even optimistic that one could be negotiated by the end of the year. Ver.di would also aim to get the Ministry of Labour to extend the agreement to all employers in the sector. It is disappointed that so far the Red Cross has refused to join the new organisation. Ver.di wants to secure pay levels in eldercare comparable to the public sector which it argues are vital to retain experienced staff and improve recruitment of new workers.
Jul. 09, 2019 The ver.di and IG BCE energy unions have negotiated a new 18-month agreement covering around 20000 workers. The TG Energie negotiations include EON Energie and a range of other electricity and gas companies. The main element of the agreement is a 3.7% pay increase. There will also be a 75 EURO a month increase for trainees along with a commitment that they will be offered a job once they successfully complete their training. This commitment will be in force until 2022.
May. 28, 2019 The ver.di health union in the Baden-Württemberg region has successfully negotiated a new pay deal with the Schmieder group of rehabilitation clinics that brings the pay of the 2000 employees in line with pay in municipal hospitals. The agreement will run until 31 March 2021 when the union will again aim to keep pay in alignment. There is only one other private health facility in the region - a non-profit organisation - that is also in line with the public sector. Ver.di sees the Schmieder deal as setting the standard and negotiated just in time to put pressure on the Waldberg-Zeil clinic in Oberschwaben where the next round of negotiations takes place on 19 June and where 600 workers have already taken strike action.