Newsletter Database

7807 articles found.
On March 5, Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced a rise of the UK adult minimum wage by 3.8%, fr... [more]

On March 5, Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced a rise of the UK adult minimum wage by 3.8%, from UKP 5.52 to UKP 5.73 (Euro 7.57) in October 2008. The new rate for 18 to 21-year-olds will be UKP 4.77, up from 4.60, while 16 to 17-year-olds will get UKP 3.53, up from UKP 3.40. Both UNISON, the public services union, and Usdaw, the retail union, have welcomed this rise as a step in the right direction but have made some reservations too. UNISON General Secretary Dave Prentis said there was no doubt the rise would benefit many low-paid workers; "However, it falls short of its aim to protect the poor from the constant price rises in essentials like fuel, food and housing", he added. Mr. Prentis recalled that in its evidence to the Low Pay Commission last year, UNISON made the case for an inflation-busting boost to the statutory minimum wage, and called for an end to youth rates and regional variations. Usdaw's General Secretary, John Hannett, said to welcome the news: "The rise will increase the quality of life for many of our members, the majority of whom are women." Yet, he added, "We are disappointed that the Low Pay Commission's recommendation to lower the age for the adult rate of the National Minimum Wage to 21 has been rejected. Usdaw will continue to campaign for the adult rate to be paid at 18."
(English: http://www.unison.org.uk/news/news_view.asp?did=4078; http://www.usdaw.org.uk/usdaw/news/1204725784_32613.html)

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The collective agreement covering municipal workers looks set to be signed by the unions after se... [more]

The collective agreement covering municipal workers looks set to be signed by the unions after several months of dispute over one element of the negotiations - compensation for emergency service workers who lose out from new early retirement rules. Although this was only a small element of the overall cost of the deal, the employers refused to budge. Partial compensation of up to €500 a year will be available to those workers affected, some of who could lose up to €200 a month. Overall the agreement includes pay increases of 2.2% from 1 June 2007 and 1 June 2008 with increases of 0.5% and 1.5% on the annual lump payments. The largest union involved, ABVAKABO FNV, has announced to try to realize better results for the emergency service workers through local negotiations.
(English: http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=249#a3603; Dutch: http://www.abvakabofnv.nl/cao/bericht/stemmen_over_onderhandelaarsakkoord_cao_gemeenten;
http://www.abvakabofnv.nl/cao/bericht/abvakabo_fnv_zet_zich_in_voor_compensatie_flo_gat)

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JHL, the main Finnish public sector trade union, has joined with three other unions in attacking ... [more]

JHL, the main Finnish public sector trade union, has joined with three other unions in attacking employers who use outsourcing to get workers transferred to different and inferior collective agreements. According to these unions groups both public and private employers have recently used practices of `collective agreement shopping', thus undermining existing collective bargaining structures. Internationally known companies, such as ISS, Sodexho, Nordea and Itella, were mentioned as `shoppers'. As a consequence, the unions argue, workers often lose in terms of both pay and levels of annual leave.
(English: http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=249#a3603; http://www.sak.fi/english/whatsnew.jsp?id=32426&location1=1&sl2=2&ao=news&lang=en)

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Many Spanish collective agreements, covering about two-thirds of all workers, contain clauses pro... [more]

Many Spanish collective agreements, covering about two-thirds of all workers, contain clauses providing for purchasing power to be sustained if price inflation exceeds the level forecasted at the time the agreements were signed. The inclusion of such compensation clauses has recently come under renewed criticism as Spanish business announced to have faced an extra wage bill of €3 billion because of this. Yet, the president of the national employers' association CEOE, Gerardo D¡az Ferr n, has defended such clauses, stating that without them unions' initial wage claims would be higher. Mr. D¡az Ferr n emphasized that guarantees in clauses have to be limited to sustaining purchasing power.
(English: Watson Wyatt Data Services, New Industrial Relations Europe, 2/2008; Spanish: http://press.jrc.it/NewsExplorer/entities/es/54148.html)

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Over 7,500 employees of the Vattenfall energy company took part in a warning strike on 1 February... [more]

Over 7,500 employees of the Vattenfall energy company took part in a warning strike on 1 February in protest at a poor pay offer from the company and threats to undermine existing pay and conditions agreements. The strike was organized by the three major unions IG BCE, ver.di and IG Metall. They managed to secure a 3.9% pay increase backdated to 1 January 2008 as well as a commitment from the company not to attack any existing negotiated rights and entitlements. The unions also secured a preferred 12-month agreement rather than a longer-term deal.
(English: http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=249#a3603;
German: https://vattenfall-bb.verdi.de/data/tarifinfo_ve_050208.pdf)

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Public services union UNISON continues to build a co-ordinated collective bargaining campaign - P... [more]

Public services union UNISON continues to build a co-ordinated collective bargaining campaign - Pay Matters - in response to the government's policy of trying to limit public sector pay increases to 2% (See also Collective Bargaining Newsletter No. 1). On February 13, the union's national executive council met to discuss progress and to review in particular developments in local government. The council called upon branches and members to build bottom up pressure for fair pay rises beyond the government's limit and called for members across public services to speak out and provide the union with examples of what a 2% limit would mean to real people providing vital services. UNISON is emphasizing in particular the need to improve the pay of those on the lowest pay rates.
On February 18, UNISON, Unite and the GMB have rejected a three-year pay offer covering local authorities in Scotland. The employers' organisation proposed rises of 2.2% in 2008, 2.3% in 2009 and a further 2.2% in 2010. UNISON regional officer Dougie Back, secretary to the trade union negotiators, said: "This level of offer is unacceptable to local government staff. It doesn't approach the current rate of inflation, let alone begin to catch up the loss staff have suffered over recent years".
(English: http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=249#a3603; http://www.unison.org.uk/news/news_view.asp?did=4032; http://www.unison.org.uk/news/news_view.asp?did=4037)

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Employers' associations and trade unions in the banking sector have agreed upon a new collective ... [more]

Employers' associations and trade unions in the banking sector have agreed upon a new collective agreement. In line with the recent recommendations of the technical working group made up of Italy's national employer association Confindustria and the three main union confederations, CGIL, CISL and UIL, the agreement is valid for three (instead of four) years, from 2008 to 2010. It increases pay and allowances for these years by totally 11.5%, and moreover pays arrears for 2006-2007 worth €1600 for the average employee.
(English: http://www.union-network.org/UNIFinance.nsf; Watson Wyatt Data Services, New Industrial Relations Europe, 2/2008)

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A new pay agreement has been reached for the approximately 200,000 teachers employed by the Swedi... [more]

A new pay agreement has been reached for the approximately 200,000 teachers employed by the Swedish municipalities, backdated to July 2007 and running until March 2010. The average pay increase for this period has been set on 10.2% totally. The teachers' unions said that their pay increases were lagging behind in their last wage accord, which explains the comparatively high increase.
(English: Watson Wyatt Data Services, New Industrial Relations Europe, 2/2008; Swedish: http://www.lararforbundet.se/web/ws.nsf)

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The Solidarnosc union federation wants the government to take a different approach to pay issues ... [more]

The Solidarnosc union federation wants the government to take a different approach to pay issues in the health service. Solidarnosc argues that the pay rates of professional groups should be set more systematically and linked in some way to the development of average earnings and to economic growth. For quite some time there are widespread disputes over pay in the Polish health sector and, according to union President Janusz Sniadek, the government is creating social tensions and even chaos by dealing with each professional group separately rather than negotiating across the whole of the health service. The OPZZ union federation has been pleading for pay rises of up to 11% in the public sector.
(English: http://www.epsu.org/spip/cob.php3?id_mot=249#a3603; http://www.solidarnosc.org.pl/en/archives/2008/jan/jan_24.htm; Watson Wyatt Data Services, New Industrial Relations Europe, 2/2008)

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On February 16, 10,000 workers from the Postal Services throughout Spain demonstrated in the cent... [more]

On February 16, 10,000 workers from the Postal Services throughout Spain demonstrated in the centre of Madrid in favour of pay rise and greater job security for the 64,000 postal employees. The unions regard the demonstration to be a resounding success. The secretary in FSP-UGT responsible for the postal sector told the media that the recent modernization efforts of the Postal service unilaterally focused on technology and neglected the human factor. He emphasized the slogan of the union, "there can be no economic success without social success". The union secretary explained that the starting pay of postal workers is between €800 - 900, but that the problem is that this includes a variable `health bonus' incentive of €180 that is deducted if the worker falls ill; this penalty can apply six months after the illness.
(English: http://www.union-network.org/unipostal.nsf/70c3d04c5f60c73cc1256800001e3b89/72449d62cf01e640c12573fb0032f600?OpenDocument)

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