Schmit reassures social partners for central governments their digitalisation agreement is in friends’ hands
In a meeting held at the Berlaymont on 19 February, Commissioner Schmit welcomed the EU sectoral agreement on digitalisation and the signatory social partners’ request to implement it through EU legislation.
The agreement reached between the European Parliament and Council on the Corporate Social Due Diligence Directive has been blocked by an alliance of governments led by France under Macron and with tacit support of Germany and Italy.
The 480,000 workers in municipalities and 140,000 workers in regional government are set to get pay increases of 4% from 1 April as a first instalment of the 6.51% (municipal) and 6.53% (regional) increases over the next two years. An additional 2% fund is available for unions to negotiate separately for different groups of workers and so the overall pay rise will be closer to 8.8% and with an expectation that the real increase overall will be 2.17%. There are also additional amounts for the lower paid. At the end of 2025 there will be further negotiations that will focus on the comparative
EPSU and PSI have sent solidarity greetings to the three union federations – Filctem-Cgil, Flaei- Cisl and Uiltec – in their dispute with the ENEL energy company. The three unions are planning national strike action on 8 March and began a month-long period of industrial action affecting overtime, travel and changes to working hours on 24 February. The unions are angry about the company’s unilateral plans to change working hours arrangements, to outsource operations on the electricity grid, and its refusal to renew the remote work agreement. The three federations argue that the measures will
The ver.di trade union continues to negotiate with employers in the private and non-profit health sector to tackle staff shortages. The latest success comes after 19 days of strike action at the Jewish Hospital in Berlin where staffing levels will be stipulated across most areas of operation and employees will get compensation in the form of additional days off if the hospital fails to abide by the agreement. If workers are in stressful situations because of staff shortages they accumulate points which can mount up to be taken as time off. The agreement will apply from December 2024. Public
The FNV and NU’91 trade unions have negotiated a new collective agreement covering the 80,000 employees of the University Medical Centres. Salaries will increase by 4% on 1 May 2024, (maximum of €246.24, gross/full-time basis) and on 1 July 2025, by 3% (maximum of €192.06, gross/full-time basis). If inflation in 2025 is significantly higher than 3%, then an additional agreement could be negotiated. There will be a travel allowance of 0.18 per kilometre and the working from home allowance will increase to €2.35 per day and will be automatically adjusted each year to the maximum tax allowance
The UNISON, Unite and GMB trade unions have been mobilising their members in the NHS and private contractors to secure unpaid COVID bonuses and pay rises. UNISON and Unite members are taking on Mitie, the large private contractor, which has refused to pay a COVID bonus despite the company being signed up to the national Agenda for Change agreement which requires the payment. Meanwhile, Unite members formerly employed by the contractor Serco but now directly employed by the NHS at Bart’s Hospital in London are also claiming their COVID payment which the hospital management have so far refused
The SDE energy trade union has raised concerns about the capacity of the energy sector to cope with the green transition. The union highlights slow wage growth in the sector, which is adding to the major challenges in recruiting new staff and the lengthy training required to ensure they have the specific skills needed. The SDE is also worried that existing staff are leaving the energy sector and seeking employment in better-paid positions in other industries. The union points out that a lack of skilled staff will make it difficult to successfully upgrade energy facilities. It has also raised
Eight trade union organisations (CFDT, CFE-CGC, CGT, CFTC, FO, FSU, Solidaires and UNSA) are coordinating their call for gender equality on 8 March – International Women’s Day – with actions planned across the country. The unions note the persistent gender pay gap in both public and private sectors and the concentration of women in low-paying sectors. They are calling for the revaluation of jobs in sectors dominated by women, transparency over pay and sanctions against employers that discriminate, massive investment in public services and action to tackle violence and harassment. An eight
The OSSOO state sector trade union has provided further evidence of how workers in central administration have seen their real pay fall. It has written to the government setting out the latest trends which show that between 2021 and 2023 real incomes fell by over 8% in the private sector, 15% in the public and non-profit sector but by 25% in central government. The union also argues that while employers in the private sector have announced their willingness to increase wages by 5-6 %, no salary increase is foreseen for civil servants, on the contrary, the plans are for an overall cut in the
The Sanitas and Columna trade unions are trying to make progress on a number of fronts, including securing pay increases for workers in health, care and local government for 2024 and to negotiate sector-wide agreements in all three sectors. In local government Columna is calling for guarantees that workers will be paid according to a national pay grid and no longer covered by each local authority and it also wants agreements to cover the sector or groups of authorities and not council-by-council. Both Sanitas and Columna are also calling for a pay rise for workers in social assistance and to
The Kommunal trade union with 350,000 members covered by the largest collective agreement in Sweden (1.2 million workers in local government) is seeking major improvements in the current negotiations. It wants to address the problem that many workers don’t understand the pay system and the criteria used to establish their salary. There are concerns that the system is arbitrary. The union also wants to see changes to working time with more worker control over their working time arrangements rather than leaving it to the discretion of management or algorithmic systems. Kommunal stresses that