On 28 September, the European Commission published its proposal to better protect workers from asbestos, by lowering the current occupational exposure limit for asbestos from 100,000 fibres per cubic meter to 10,000 fibres per cubic meter.
The LVSADA health workers’ union organised two further warning strikes on 27 and 28 September following an initial action on 27 July. The union is pressing the government to agree to pay increases for all health workers in recognition of the work they continue to do under difficult circumstances. LVSADA says that both the European Commission and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development have acknowledged the need for action, including improvements to pay, to help tackle staff shortages. The union is angry that the government has unilaterally put forward a new pay system which
The TEHY and SuPer nurses’ trade unions have condemned the new law that imposes tougher requirements on industrial action in the care sector. Despite the law, further action as part of the unions’ continuing campaign to secure higher pay took place on 27 September and the unions are determined to pursue their claims with SuPer considering declaring mass resignations in home care. The unions also point out that existing legislation already regulated strike action and so the new law imposes a further burden that targets the care sector specifically. They also argue that, in contrast to the rules
Members of the public services unions Fórsa, SIPTU and INMO were involved in industrial action on 21-23 September as part of the ICTU confederation’s “Valuing Care, Valuing Community” campaign. The unions are pushing for better pay and conditions and increased staffing in non-profit providers of health and social care. They argue that workers in the sector have seen their pay fall relatively to directly employed public sector workers who carry out the same or similar jobs. This is having a major impact on the non-profit sector’s ability to recruit and retain staff.
The FP-CGIL, CISL-FP, UIL-FPL and UIL-PA public service federations are mobilising their members in protests in two sectors – health and social care and the justice ministry. The national health and social care protest on 29 October will be calling for increased funding, more jobs and better pay and conditions. The unions argue that it is all very well for the EU-backed national reform and resilience plans to support investment in new facilities, but the challenge will be to find the workers to staff them. Meanwhile, the federations have declared a state of agitation in the justice ministry as
The vida and GPA services unions have just launched their main demands in the “social economy” sector negotiations that cover 130,000 in private health and social care. The unions are calling for a pay increase that not only covers inflation (currently topping 9%), but also takes into account the hard work put in by employees over the past year. The unions also want to see more staff recruited and more free time, with the pandemic exposing the impact of staff shortages. They have a range of specific demands relating to overtime, job classifications and mileage allowances – all elements that
The FBU firefighters’ union is the latest public service union to consider industrial action over pay. The union has rejected a 2% pay offer and is now consulting its membership over a possible national ballot on strike action. Workers in universities, including non-teaching staff, began strike action on 20 September, having rejected a 3% pay offer and calling for a pay rise to match inflation. In the health service, the RCN nursing union has postponed its historic ballot on industrial action to run from 6 October to 2 November while in central government the PCS’s ballot for industrial action
EPSU affiliates joined the national rally over pay and prices organised by the CMKOS trade union confederation on 5 September. CMKOS is stressing that pay demands should be met as the current surge in inflation is not the result of higher wages. The confederation also wants to see measures to cap prices and tax excess profits and for the monthly minimum wage to be increased by CZK 2000 (€82) to CZK 18200 (€742). CMKOS has now called for a national demonstration in Prague on 8 October. Meanwhile, the OSZSP health union is demanding a 15% pay increase for all health workers in 2023. Negotiations
The Tehy and SuPer nurses’ unions have responded angrily to plans by the government for legislation that would effectively ban strike action in health and social care. The unions are in dispute with the municipal employers who have rejected a proposal for a five-year strategy to increase pay and tackle the staffing shortage in the sector. In response, Tehy and SuPer have been running a campaign of industrial action and recently announced targeted strike action around the country. Rather than intervene and discuss with employers and trade unions how to resolve the dispute the government is
The FOA trade union has sent a wake-up call to politicians from all sides about the need to address pay in the welfare sector. The union brought together 1200 of its shop stewards from across the country in a two-day conference to discuss pay in health, social care and other services and to really gauge the feeling at the workplace. The message from the conference was a mounting concern that society does not recognise the value of welfare work. FOA warns of increasing frustration and discontent among workers if action is not taken. It is already extremely difficult to recruit workers to the
The NSF and Fagforbundet trade unions have been considering the findings of a major survey of over 5000 nurses, nursing auxiliaries and assistants in their 50s and 60s, that reveals the pressure they face in terms of physical and mental stress and the main reasons why they tend to leave before retirement age. Increased staffing is seen as an essential measure to address the problem and help ensure that more of this skilled and experienced group of workers stay in work for longer. The unions also focus on the extent of part-time work and that while some nurses opt for fewer hours because they