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Arkea’s merciless line of cuts is back on the agenda – JHL will start a strike in Arkea on Wednesday 17 November

Arkea Oy, owned by the City of Turku, is again planning to switch to another employer union and transfer the employees to be covered by cheaper collective agreements. The Central Administration of the city has given its blessing to the plan. The city management feels that the savings programme that was previously agreed on is not enough anymore.

Discussions between Trade Union JHL and Arkea have not led anywhere. JHL is forced to go on strike for decent terms and conditions of employment.

Together with Arkea employees, JHL has made several savings proposals to the company. Arkea Oy, a company producing property and catering services, has rejected these proposals. JHL cannot agree to Arkea’s intentions to shop around for a cheaper collective agreement for itself. The company is going to harshly weaken the terms and conditions of employment for over 1,000 people. JHL has no other option than to start a strike.

The strike will begin on Wednesday 17 November at 12 pm. It concerns all work done by JHL members in Arkea. The strike will be limited in such a way that it does not endanger anyone’s life, safety, or property.

The strike will have an impact on, say, day care and school dining, because Arkea delivers meals to the day care units, comprehensive and vocational schools, and upper secondary schools in Turku.

– The duty of a trade union is to make sure that employees get a proper living wage for their work. Arkea has returned to the policy of bringing misery to employees by collective agreement shopping. It is shocking that the decision makers of the City of Turku have given their blessing to this kind of behaviour instead of presenting solutions, such as additional funding. It is unfortunate that people in Turku must suffer because of this dispute. However, we have no other option in this situation, JHL President Päivi Niemi-Laine emphasises.

Arkea Oy, owned by the City of Turku, is planning to replace its current collective agreement with a cheaper one. The employees are already poorly paid. A cheaper collective agreement would drop the employees’ total earnings by 15–30%, depending on their duties and working hours. Weakening the terms and conditions of employment does not improve service quality or increase productivity.

If Arkea will not cancel its plans to weaken the terms and conditions of employment, JHL emphasises that the union is ready to continue industrial actions.

The last time JHL fought against Arkea’s collective agreement shopping was two years ago. At that time, two strikes were able to put a stop to it.

– Even this time, we are ready to defend our members’ terms and conditions of employment all the way to the end, President Niemi-Laine emphasises.

More information: 

President Päivi Niemi-Laine 040 702 4772
Head of region Maaret Laakso 040 5444 887