Newsletter Database

6828 articles found.
After consulting their rank and file, the trade unions organising NMBS-SNCB Belgian railways, ACO... [more]

After consulting their rank and file, the trade unions organising NMBS-SNCB Belgian railways, ACOD/CGSP-Spoor/Rail, ACV-CSC-Transcom and VSOA/CGSP-Spoor, have objected the draft social accord for 2008-2012 negotiated with the NMBS-SNCB board and called for a 24-hours' strike to take place on 20 May. According to the spokesman of the Christian ACV-CSC union, his membership unanimously rejected the draft accord, while his colleague of the Socialist ACOD/CGSP spoke about a rejection rate of over 95%. They both explained that not only the employers' proposals concerning wage increases were judged unsatisfactorily, but that the same was true for the lack of perspectives on improving the work organisation.
(Dutch: http://www.tijd.be/nieuws/binnenland/Spoorbonden_plannen_24-urenstaking.7120733-438.art; French: http://www.lloyd.be/nieuws/id21217-La_SNCB_fait_la_grve_du__au__mai.html)

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On 7 April 2008 the Labour Advisory Board within the Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance deci... [more]

On 7 April 2008 the Labour Advisory Board within the Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance decided to increase the minimum monthly wage for new labour market entrants by 6.35%. At the same time, the advisory board agreed to raise the minimum wage by about 6.4% for workers who have worked for the same employer for six consecutive months. The existing legislation sets minimum wage levels for five occupational categories: sales staff, clerical workers, auxiliary healthcare staff and auxiliary staff in nursery schools, crŠches and schools. The increases will be effective from 1 April 2008. According to the Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance, until recently the minimum wage levels were unjustifiably low, making a corrective increase imperative. This view is shared by the unions but opposed by the employers' federation. (See elsewhere in this Collective Bargaining Newsletter for minimum wage developments in France, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland)
(English: http://www.eurofound.europa.eu/eiro/2008/04/articles/cy0804039i.htm)

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A long conflict concerning the renewal of the collective agreement in regional bus transport has ... [more]

A long conflict concerning the renewal of the collective agreement in regional bus transport has escalated in a 48-hours' strike, on May 14 and 15, and the announcement by the unions of a further three-days strike, on May 20-22. Except for the four main cities, Dutch regional transport has been privatised and the companies involved (Veolia, Connexxion and Arriva) fiercely oppose the union demand of a structural pay rise over 2008 of 3.5% and a 0.5% lift of the end year bonus. In the first round, 95% of the 13,000 workers went on strike. After this round, the employers offered a 20% wage increase, yet under the condition that the workers should work longer shifts and should give up 17 paid days-off, paid pauses and their 0.65% end year bonus. On May 19, the employers in large newspaper ads urged the bus drivers "to work like it is usual in the Netherlands", thus adding fuel to the flames.
(Dutch: http://www.fnvbondgenoten.nl/branches_bedrijven/branches/vervoer/openbaar_vervoer/reizigersinformatie_acties_stree)

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Six public service federations jointly organised a day of demonstrations and strike actions on 15... [more]

Six public service federations jointly organised a day of demonstrations and strike actions on 15 May, in protest at the government proposals to reform the public services, the so-called RGPP - R‚vision G‚n‚rale des Politiques Publiques (General revisions of policies on the public sector). The unions believe that these plans imply job cuts of 35-40,000 per year, widespread privatisation and deterioration of the quality of education. Earlier, the CFDT confederation reported that prospects for social dialogue appear bleak with public service minister Herv‚ Morin saying there is nothing to discuss in terms of how the RGPP is to be implemented. On 15 May, hundreds of thousands of French teachers and civil servants, including potal, hospital and customs workers, staged a one-day strike. There were major demonstrations in Paris, Marseille, Toulouse and Strasbourg. Union leaders claimed that at least 60% of all French teachers were on strike, and though the government said this figure was about 35%, foreign press mostly concluded to at least 50%. Unions are already planning a bigger strike on 22 May.
(English: http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=258#a3795; http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/05/15/europe/france.php;
French: http://www.ugff.cgt.fr/ftp/communiques/fonction_publique/25_04_08.doc; http://www.fo-fonctionnaires.fr/)

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On May 8, workers at Sidenor/Gerdau plants throughout Spain conducted a 24-hour strike in protest... [more]

On May 8, workers at Sidenor/Gerdau plants throughout Spain conducted a 24-hour strike in protest of the company's move to increase working hours by 40 hours annually per worker, beginning in 2009. More strikes are expected if negotiations fail to bring a resolution. In 2003, unions bargained for a gradual reduction of hours down to a maximum of 35 hours per week by the year 2008. When Gerdau took control of Sidenor in 2005, the company vowed to respect all rights and benefits negotiated by the unions. The actual bargaining round is the first with Gerdau since the company took over Sidenor. After two months of unsuccessful negotiations the three unions involved (ELA-Metala, MCA-UGT and FM/CC.OO) have decided to take collective action.
(English: http://www.imfmetal.org/main/index.cfm?n=47&l=2&c=17638)

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Some 23,000 health and social workers - mainly those working in hospitals, eldercare and childcar... [more]

Some 23,000 health and social workers - mainly those working in hospitals, eldercare and childcare employed by the municipalities - began strike action on 16 April in support of their claim for higher pay. The unions involved were the DNO nurses' association and the FOA federation that covers a wide range of municipal employees, although they have different claims. After three weeks of strike, the general municipal settlement provides for a 12.8% salary increase over three years, while workers represented by FOA will get 13.4%. Members of FOA are being balloted over this settlement; the result will be known on 29 May. A central element of the dispute was the undervaluing of occupations dominated by women compared to male wages. Members of DNO continue to strike, looking for an increase of 15%.
(English: http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=257#a3763; http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=258#a3796;
Danish: http://www.foa.dk/sw412434.asp)

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After long and tough negotiations, on 7 May representatives of the government, the trade union co... [more]

After long and tough negotiations, on 7 May representatives of the government, the trade union confederations and the employers' association agreed on the Minimum Wage Act. As of 1 July 2008 the minimum wage will be 39% of the average wage in 2007. The average wage will no longer be calculated for the first eight months but for the whole previous year, which is more favourable for the workers involved. Thus, there will be an increase from the current 'lowest wage' for full-time work of gross monthly 2.441 kuna (Euro 335) to 2.747 kuna (Euro 377) based on the statutory minimum wage. In the years to come the share of the minimum wage in the average wage will increase each 1 July with the percentage of the real GDP increase in the previous year. The Union of Autonomous Trade Unions of Croatia (UATUC) regards the agreement as a huge step forward and as one of the first important outcomes of the pressure put by the UATUC and other union confederations through the Zagreb demonstrations of 12 April 2008 ((See also this Collective Bargaining Newsletter Year 1 No 3).
(English: letter of Dijana Sobota, Head International Department of UATUC, to John Monks, ETUC General Secretary, 9 May 2008; http://www.sssh.hr/en/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=99)

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The public sector unions of three main confederations, CGIL FP, CISL FP and UIL FPL, united in a ... [more]

The public sector unions of three main confederations, CGIL FP, CISL FP and UIL FPL, united in a national demonstration on 9 May demanding renewal of the collective agreement covering 150,000 workers in the private health sector. A new agreement should have come into effect already in January 2006. The unions now want an urgent response from the employers that a new agreement will be signed before the summer break.
(English: http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=258#a3791,
Italian: http://www.fpcgil.it/flex/cm/pages/ServeBLOB.php/L/IT/IDPagina/6284)

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The ver.di union claims for the 420,000 employees in private, public and cooperative banks a pay ... [more]

The ver.di union claims for the 420,000 employees in private, public and cooperative banks a pay rise of 8%, with a minimum of Euro 260, from 1 July 2008 (for the cooperative banks from 1 June on). Ver.di is also proposing stricter measures against rising work pressure, as well as extension of in-house training programs and of early retirement schemes. "The big banks paid out dividend increases to their shareholders, it's now time for workers to get adequate compensation,'' said Uwe Foullong, chief negotiator for ver.di. On the employers' side, Heinz Laber, chief negotiator for the AGV lobby of private banks, stated: "The impact of the financial market crisis on German banks is clearly noticeable and causes considerable uncertainty. This situation leaves only very little room for wage talks".
(English: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601100&sid=aTI5aYWzTqIE&refer=germany;
German: http://presse.verdi.de/pressemitteilungen/showNews?id=24624a58-1db0-11dd-4b13-0019b9e321cd

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During the wage dispute in the healthcare sector in October/November 2007, the government strongl... [more]

During the wage dispute in the healthcare sector in October/November 2007, the government strongly criticised the Union of Health and Social Care Professionals (TEHY), in threatening with mass resignations. Against this backdrop, on November 17 the government adopted the new Patient Safety Act, enabling to order healthcare professionals to continue working even if the worker in question has resigned. Following a request of Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen, the three union confederations, SAK, STTK and Akava, agreed on a common wording for rules regulating industrial action, particularly in the case of protected work. According to their proposal, "strike restrictions will be defined so that health and lives of citizens will not be endangered through industrial action". However, STTK-affilated TEHY and the Finnish Union of Practical Nurses (SuPer) have expressed doubts as to whether the wording of these rules can in practice restrict their right to strike. Consequently, the working party of the union confederations is continuing discussions over the exact wording of the industrial relations rules (See also this Collective Bargaining Newsletter Year 1 No 1).
(English: http://www.eurofound.europa.eu/eiro/2008/04/articles/fi0804029i.htm)

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