NFU News

Negotiations to avoid binding law in Finland failed

The Finnish government has announced a new package of measures that worsen working conditions and limit the freedom of collective bargaining. The social partners have negotiated to reach a “social contract” in order to avoid the proposed binding law, but the negotiations failed in early December.

Jorma Malinen, President at Trade Union Pro, has said that the Finnish economy needs a central agreement between the social partners instead of binding law, but that the employers brought down the agreement as they “did not see the forest for all the trees”. The Finnish government hopes to enforce the laws during 2016.

The measures will highly restrict the freedom of trade unions, as they directly interfere with the rights of labour market organisations to make their own agreements by collective bargaining. The proposal includes:

  • Eliminating two bank holidays
  • Cutting leave entitlement in the public sector from 38 to 30 days
  • Making the first day of sick leave unpaid and reducing the sick leave supplements to 80% for the following eight sick days
  • Reducing the salary supplements for working on a Sunday from 100% to 75%
  • Reducing the social insurance contributions for private sector-workers

The trade unions immediately opposed the proposed package when it was announced by Prime Minister Juha Sipilä on December 9th. Nordic Financial Unions (NFU) forcefully rejects the Finnish government’s proposal, as previously communicated in a statement, underlining the importance of safeguarding the Finnish labour model for the future.

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