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The stuck municipal negotiations are costing hundreds of euros to employees – JHL demands speedy pay raises

Employees are losing hundreds of euros because the municipal negotiations are stuck. Trade Union JHL demands a speedy solution to the situation. The union is also prepared to exert more pressure.

The Trade Union for the Public and Welfare Sectors JHL is disappointed in the failure to negotiate pay raises for municipal employees before the summer. For five months now, the municipal sector’s negotiations have been conducted in many ways, also under the lead of the National Conciliator and the conciliation board. During the conciliation process, objectives have been listed, preconditions presented, statistics investigated and viewpoints shared.

The negotiation parties have had official talks. They have also had unofficial talks outside of the negotiation tables. Despite this, there is no negotiation result and no information on when the negotiations will continue.

– Everyone deserves a pay raise. Each month without pay raises is a loss for municipal employees, because the raises will not be paid retroactively. JHL would have wanted pay raises for all municipal employees already at the beginning of June. They have truly earned their raises, JHL President Päivi Niemi-Laine states.

If the negotiations are postponed over the summer, even to year’s end, the possible pay raises may not enter into force until, say, the beginning of 2023. If the raise of EUR 46 promised for this summer was lost, the loss would amount to EUR 322 by the end of the year.

The conciliation board’s conciliation proposal included pay raises the amount of which has not been seen since the 2007 agreements on pay. Including the pay regime, they would have surpassed the winter’s and spring’s labour market solutions by a mile. Furthermore, the purpose of local arrangement instalments was to raise the salaries of those who are in the deepest pay gap.

– During the spring, JHL has organised strikes in ten cities. A ban on overtime and shift swaps is still in place in the entire nation. The people on the other side of the negotiation table must be unbelievably stubborn, seeing as even these methods have not been sufficient for expressing the strong mindset of our members. JHL will not run out of steam. There’s more to come, Päivi Niemi-Laine sheds light on the union’s plans.

JHL points out that politicians should keep their noses out of the negotiations. The negotiations must be conducted between the negotiation parties—not in the Finnish Parliament, not in social media, not in the public eye.

– During this round of negotiations, it has been really difficult to achieve a negotiation result for the municipal sector. There is no need to increase the difficulty level by letting parties without any negotiation power meddle into the negotiations. No politician should polish their public image by meddling into the municipal negotiations, Niemi-Laine remarks.

– The municipal sector’s agreement period ended already at the end of February. Since then, the sector has been undergoing a period without agreement. JHL’s clear demands remain the same: Pay raises and a pay regime for all municipal agreement sectors. In addition, working life quality must be further developed, also in the collective agreement. The situation needs to be solved sooner rather than later. Right now, we expect the employer to show clear appreciation to the employees by solving the situation, Päivi Niemi-Laine demands.

More information: President Päivi Niemi-Laine, tel. 040 702 4772