The vpod/ssp public services union says that it is totally unacceptable that certain workers in the care sector are denied basic working time rights. At the moment they face long working days without breaks, double shifts and hours that are not properly registered. Socio-educational staff in care institutions are currently excluded from the working hours provisions in the labour code. The union argues that these workers perform difficult tasks that are often not recognized, although they are essential for the functioning of society and the quality of service to residents can suffer if
The vpod/ssp public services union is continuing to sound the alarm over urgent staff shortages in healthcare. It says that action is needed to retain staff as well as recruit new workers and that initiatives to shorten the working week can help. Reductions to weekly working hours have been introduced or are being planned in the Wetzikon and Felix Platter hospitals along with the Siloah and Lindenhof health groups. Meanwhile, vpod/ssp reports that Aargau hospitals have significantly increased their allowances for weekend and holiday shifts. The union is also continuing to press employers to
The VPOD public services union supported demonstrations in more than 25 towns and cities across the country on 9 April calling for action on working time. The protests focused on the potential environmental benefits of shorter working time along with the positive outcomes in terms of gender equality and workers’ rights. VPOD noted that progress on working time reduction has been limited with average working in Switzerland still closed to 42 hours a week. The union underlined the importance of improving work-life balance and the prospects of having a fairer share of domestic responsibilities if
The VPOD public services union has reacted positively to the decision by the Zurich regional hospital in Wetzikon to reduce the working week for nurses from 42 to 37.8 hours, with full pay. The initiative runs until the end of 2023 and only applies to nurses who regularly work in the three-shift model, i.e. who also provide night and weekend services. The union launched a charter for health workers in 2019 that called for reduced working hours on full pay as part of a wider range of measures to make substantial improvements to working conditions and improve recruitment and retention. VPOD sees
In January the vpod public services union won an important case for live-in (24 hours) care workers. The federal court ruled that 24-hour carers, who are placed in private households by temporary employment agencies, must be covered by the labour code. Previously, these workers had no protection which meant no limit to working hours and no rights to rest or time-off because the labour code didn’t apply to working arrangements in private households. The union will continue to campaign for live-in care workers’ rights as the ruling does not apply to those directly employed by households.
The vpod/ssp trade union is mobilising for a national demonstration of health workers in Berne on 30 October. The aim of the protest is to highlight the efforts and sacrifices that health workers have made in responding to the COVID-19 crisis. Key demands include a COVID bonus but also action to deal with the long-standing problems of pay and understaffing in the sector. The union is also calling for measures to improve training, work-life balance and retirement provision and argues that pay increases should reflect the arduousness of many health workers’ jobs.
The vpod/ssp public services union has launched an organising and collective bargaining initiative to boost the level of activism in the union across the country. The aim is to talk to members and workers at local level to find out the main issues of concern and discuss what can be done in response. Pay and staffing levels have unsurprisingly emerged among the hottest issues as the bus has made its way through health and social care workplaces in Basel, Bern and the regions of Solothurn and St.Gallen. However, workers have also raised concerns about fair working hours, having proper breaks
The vpod/ssp public services union has launched an initiative to support its local activists in mobilising to win better pay and conditions for health workers across the country. The strike at the CHUV University Hospital in Lausanne was the starting signal for the union’s “Road to Strike” organizing campaign. Vpod/ssp argues that the situation in health establishments has worsened due to the pandemic with many workers facing burnout and leaving the sector. The persistent staffing shortages undermine working conditions and further pressures come from private health companies’ search for profit
Public services union vpod/ssp has welcomed the referendum result which means that the Basel city region will implement a minimum wage of CHF 21 (EUR 19.20) per hour. The regional government will have to implement the result, including in public companies. The vpod says that the region pays some of its employees below the subsistence level, even though it supported the introduction of a minimum wage. The regional government must now start talks with the vpod’s Basel region and other social partners in order to implement the initiative quickly. The union argues that it is not just wages below
The Bündnis Gesundheit alliance of health unions has secured the commitment of the federal council and health employers’ organisation to a regular exchange on how to tackle the challenges facing the sector. The unions are looking for a clear signal towards better working conditions and wages and compensation for their exceptional performance during the pandemic. The health alliance was founded last summer and has been calling for a range of far-reaching and sustainable improvements. The federal councillor (minister) responsible for health, Alain Berset, and Lukas Engelberger, president of the
The vpod public services trade union has welcomed the award of a COVID-19 bonus at the Cantonal (regional) hospital in Zug. The allocation of CHFr 1.2 million (EUR 1.1m) will mean the 1000-strong staff will get about CHFr 1000 each (EUR 1080). The union argues that such payments should be applied more broadly across the sector and launched a campaign at the end of February targeting 300 health institutions in three other cantons – St Gallen, Thurgau and Appenzell. The vpod stresses the fact that this is a special payment and doesn’t deflect from the need for much better pay and conditions for
The vpod/ssp public services union, as part of the Health Alliance campaign, has called on the Federal Council to refrain from any watering down of labour legislation and to provide comprehensive protection for health personnel, including special measures for pregnant women and other vulnerable people. The Alliance is also calling for massive financial investment in working conditions, a corona premium for all health workers and action to address structural deficiencies in the healthcare system and tackle precarious work in the sector. vpod/ssp (DE) vpod/ssp (FR)