Collective bargaining – trends and developments
Collective bargaining is a core activity of trade unions and EPSU’s affiliates negotiate with public service employers at every level. This can range from national public-sector wide bargaining to sector and local negotiations with public sector employers but also private and non-profit providers of public services. EPSU works with the European Trade Union Confederation to try to improve collective bargaining rights for all workers across Europe. We also act as a European information point so that EPSU affiliates are aware of trends in public service negotiations. EPSU’s collective bargaining newsletter provides regular updates on developments across Europe.
EPSU Social Services Working Group meets in Brussels to discuss key issues in the care sector
EPSU Social Services Working Group discussed effective collective bargaining coverage of social care workers in Central and Eastern Europe, the European Commission’s Skills and Talent Package and other topics.
Unions protest over collective agreement in residential care
Federations in the CGIL, CISL and UIL confederations are maintaining their protests against the decision by the ANASTE employers’ organisation to sign a collective agreement with unrepresentative trade unions. ANASTE brings together private sector residential care companies that employ around 20,000 workers. CGIL, CISL and UIL argue that the three-year collective agreement signed with the unrepresentative unions is weak in a number of aspects, not least the level of the pay increase – well below inflation – and provisions related to sick pay and leave. The CGIL, CISL and UIL trade unions had
Unions stress need for new approach to sector negotiations
The JHL public service and OAJ education unions are calling on employers to make progress in stalled negotiations that cover over 130,000 workers in the state, education and the churches. The unions are challenging the fact that the employers are waiting to see what happens in the private sector and particularly the export-led sector, before further negotiating on pay in the public sector. JHL and OAJ argue that the centralised system of bargaining no longer applies and that sector negotiations have to focus on the needs and demands of the sectors that deliver welfare for citizens and provide
Employers block progress in state and church negotiations
The JHL trade union has expressed frustration at the decision of the state and church employers not to finalise negotiations over pay increases for 2023. They are apparently waiting to see how things develop in the key technology industry in the private sector. JHL raises the question of whether the church and state employers should be looking towards the private sector to influence their negotiations and also whether or not this is in effect a form of coordination that employer organisations have rejected in the past. In both church and state negotiations there is a commitment to negotiate a
Pay and bargaining progress for health and justice workers
The CITUB trade union confederation reports that workers in regional health inspectorates and emergency medical centres have seen substantial salary increases from the beginning of December. Regional health inspection staff have seen pay rise by up to 30% while emergency medical staff are getting around 22%. Unions have been organising a series of protests over pay since the autumn. Meanwhile, the Podkrepa trade union confederation reports that workers at the Ministry of Justice are covered by a new framework agreement that strengthens social dialogue and ensures protection of workers’ social
Important initiative in local government social dialogue
The FSC-CCOO and FeSP-UGT public service federations met with the FEMP local government employers’ organisation on 12 December to agree a framework for negotiations and on setting up an observatory of the public service in local administrations. The trade unions are keen to address a range of issues including training, equality plans, occupational reclassification, digitalisation, job creation, the ageing of the workforce, the improvement and the expansion of services. The aim of the observatory will be to undertake studies and identify good practices in relation to the development of public
State sector unions welcome improvements to main agreement
Trade unions across the three confederations – LO, YS and Unio – have negotiated changes to the main state agreement that regulates the relations between unions and the government. With many government agencies facing restructuring, the unions are pleased that the new agreement, that runs until 2025, will strengthen co-determination and ensure trade unions are involved in tackling change and the introduction of, for example, new digital tools and processes. The agreement also reinforces the commitment of both sides to address sustainability and climate change and has clearer wording around