On 25 January, the Commission published a long-awaited package on “Strengthening social dialogue in the EU”, consisting of a Communication on EU level and a draft Council Recommendation on the national level of social dialogue
The UK trade union movement has been angered by the government’s rushed draft legislation to impose minimum service levels on public service strikers. The government claims it is bringing the UK into line with countries like Italy and Spain but fails to acknowledge the different systems in those countries that guarantee the right to strike and impose no requirements on balloting for industrial action. The UK legislation, if passed, would not ensure that trade unions can negotiate minimum service levels and would allow employers to dismiss workers who failed to comply with the requirement to
All the major trade union organisations – including CGT, CFDT, FO, UNSA, CFE-CGC – along with student groups were involved in coordinated, nationwide strikes and protests on 19 January in opposition to government plans to reform the pensions system. Trade unions are opposed to the increase in pension age and years of contributions required to get a full pension. They cite the independent Pensions Advisory Council that says that the financing of the pensions system is not under threat. The trade unions have set out alternative plans, including measures to support workers in their fifties to
The ver.di services union is calling for a 10.5% (minimum €500 a month) pay increase for the 21000 workers covered by the collective agreement at Helios, the biggest private hospital group in the country. The union argues that the hard work of health employees needs to be recognised at the same time as the need to protect workers’ purchasing power in the face of soaring inflation. Ver.di wants a 12-month agreement and rejects the idea of any compensation in the form of a one-off payment. Meanwhile, the union has criticised the impact of the commercialisation of care in light of the collapse of
Members of the SIPTU union working as retained (part-time) firefighters have voted overwhelmingly for industrial action, including strike action, in protest at the failure to address problems in relation to pay, leave and working time. The union argues that serious recruitment and retention problems are putting extra pressure on existing staff who have also seen a decline in their pay and are finding increasingly difficult to take leave. SIPTU is calling for the introduction of a structure system of pay and conditions.
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