This week’s strike warning has been given by the Nurses’ Association (Super), the Health Care Trade Union (Tehy), the Specialized Services and White-collar Association (Erto), the Jyty Trade Union, the Public and Welfare Sectors Trade Union (JHL) and the Social Workers Union (Talentia).
The unions have also expressed their readiness to strike next week if the labor dispute cannot be resolved this week. The Office of the National Mediator announced yesterday that negotiations will continue on Friday.
YLE on Monday reported that the dispute basically stems from differences of opinion about the extent of the pay gap between the private and public sectors. Both employers’ organizations and trade unions are committed to narrowing the gap, but the increases offered by employers have been rejected as insufficient.
“Minimum wages in the private sector collective agreement are lower and easier to use than in the public sector. You should get equal pay for equal work.” Sanna ÄngesleväChief steward of Tampere region Touhula, compressed for YLE.
Employers’ organizations have estimated their latest offer to be an 11.2 percent pay rise over the next two and a half years, an estimate disputed by unions.
“With the percentages offered to us, the private sector would soon have no employees. The wage differences are so significant” comment Jukka Parkkolacontract negotiator at Super.
Employers have argued that they cannot afford to improve their latest offer. Tuomas Mänttäri, the labor market director of the Finnish Association of Private Nurses (Hali), said that the current supply is already exceptionally high.
“We cannot make a salary agreement that is completely impossible to implement in the economic situation of the industry,” he told YLE.
Parkkola also said that the unions have expressed their willingness to discuss limiting the scope of strikes, but Hali has not taken up the offer. He added that private care providers are working to ensure the safety of clients by relying on temporary and temporary workers and providing management cover for striking workers.
“Our members do everything they can to avoid moving the elderly [to other facilities],” he noted.
The collective agreement of the private social sector covers more than 70,000 employees.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: The Nordic Page