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13 janvier 2020

Collective Bargaining newsletter December 2019

You can find below the key developments in collective bargaining across Europe, coming from the lateset issue of the Collective bargaining newsletter:

  1. Belgium - The socialist trade union FGTB/ABVV has issued a call to take part in a nationwide demonstration on 28 January 2020. The union fears that the social security budget will see a shortfall of €6.4 billion by 2024. The result will probably be a cut in pensions, health care and social benefits. Hence the necessity to protest and call for a policy change, the union declared. FGBT/ABVV also presented a ten-point plan to strengthen the social security safety net. The ten points will be the core of the announced demonstration.
  2. France- A transport stoppage that has caused daily travel problems for millions of people in France surpassed the duration of a 1995 strike whose success unions are hoping to repeat. With no end in sight, train and metro transport was severely disrupted in Paris and on regional lines, as railway workers stayed off the job too. Talks between unions and the government failed to find common ground, and a new day of mass protest has been called for January 9 – two days after negotiations are set to resume.
  3. Germany - In the fourth round of negotiations, the DGB unions reached a collective agreement for around 750,000 temporary agency workers. The DGB board member and negotiator said the negotiations were tough, but significant improvements for employees in the temporary work agency sector were implemented. In addition to the wage increase, there will be more vacation days and higher holiday and Christmas pay for all employees. This is another important step towards harmonizing working conditions for employees in this industry.
  4. Netherlands - CNV, the National Federation of Christian Trade Unions, the country’s second largest trade union with over 350,000 members, has opened a debate on the potential for reducing weekly working hours down to 30. The goal of the 30-hour working week is less absenteeism and burn-outs, a better work/private balance, more time for caring tasks and promoting equal opportunities for men and women.
  5. United Kingdom – Almost 3 million workers in Britain are to receive a pay rise of more than four times the rate of inflation from April, after the government said it would increase the official minimum wage. In an announcement designed to woo low-paid workers in the immediate aftermath of the Prime Minister election victory earlier this month, the government said the ‘national living wage’ for over-25s would increase from £8.21 (€9.69) an hour to £8.72 (€10.29) from the start of April.

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