Helsinki (27.01.2022 - Heikki Jokinen) The forestry giant UPM still shows no willingness to find a way towards an agreement with the trade unions. For UPM leaders, ideology and the wish to crush the unions is foremost amongst its policy goals.

UPM adamantly refuses to negotiate a collective agreement for salaried employees and will only begin to negotiate on collective agreements for workers in its paper and pulp mills if the unions accept its preconditions as to the form of the agreement.

The company just simply refused to negotiate on the basis of the more than 30 other collective agreements the Paper Workers' Union had already agreed upon with other companies in the branch, including Stora Enso and the Metsä Group. UPM did not even bother to give their own proposal to the union.

Helsinki (18.01.2022 - Heikki Jokinen) A pay deal at the last minute has stopped a planned strike by the salaried employees in the technology industry from going ahead. The new collective agreement will raise pay by 1.9 per cent this year.

The agreement is for two years, but the pay rise now agreed will only be for the first year. The second year will be negotiated at a later date.

Negotiations with the new employers' association Technology Industry Employers of Finland did not succeed initially, and Trade Union Pro issued a strike warning for the period between 14 January and 23 January.

Helsinki (13.01.2022 – Heikki Jokinen) The new collective agreement for the technology industry will raise pay by 2 per cent in 2022. On January 7, The Executive Committee of the Industrial Union adopted the agreement by 20 votes to 8.

When approving the agreement, the union cancelled all planned industrial action in the technology industry. It had given a strike warning just a few days before the deal was struck.

The general pay rise for all will be 1.5 per cent and a locally agreed component of 0.5 per cent. The deal is valid until 30 of November 2023, but it can be terminated by 30 November 2022 if the parties do not reach agreement on a pay for 2023 before that.

Helsinki (20.12.2021 - Heikki Jokinen) The forestry giant UPM crusade against collective bargaining escalates: it promises to pay 30 euro extra per day to all employees who will work as strikebreakers.

Almost all Finnish forestry companies have now agreed with the trade unions upon collective agreements for the next few years. Among them are the two other major companies Stora Enso and Metsä Group.

But UPM is a notable exception: it says it will not make any kind of collective agreement for salaried employees and it will only begin to negotiate on collective agreements for workers in its paper and pulp mills if the unions fully accept its preconditions as to the form of the agreement.

Helsinki (16.12.2021 - Heikki Jokinen) Antti Palola will continue as the President of STTK, the Finnish Confederation of Professionals. He has been the President since 2013.

Before STTK Antti Palola (62) was 2005 - 2013 President of the Federation of Salaried Employees Pardia which represented salaried employees working mostly in the state and public sector. In 2019, Pardia merged with the Trade Union Pro.

By profession Palola is a sea captain. In his earlier career prior to Pardia he was working among other things on ships, in the Finnish Ship's Officers' Union and as a teacher in naval schools.

Helsinki (14.12.2021 - Heikki Jokinen) FOPCU, the paper workers' union in Uruguay is worried about UPM’s unwillingness to negotiate with the trade unions in Finland. At the beginning of December, the union sent a letter to the UPM CEO Jussi Pesonen.

FOPCU writes that they are concerned as to whether the lack of understanding and dialogue will be transferred to Uruguay, where dialogue between the parties is working well at the moment.

We in Uruguay, writes FOPCU President Washington Cayaffa, do not understand UPM's distancing itself from the good practises of social dialogue. It has been and continues to be useful in avoiding conflicts, which do not benefit any of the parties, he adds.

Helsinki (13.12.2021 - Heikki Jokinen) UPM, the Finnish forestry giant, is still confounding everyone with its stance on collective agreement negotiations. On the one hand, it refuses even to negotiate with the unions and on the other hand, it somewhat surprisingly accepts some pay deals.

The Industrial Union reached on 10 December two new collective agreements in the mechanical forestry industry sector with UPM.

The UPM Plywood and UPM Timber pay deals follow the general line of the forestry pay rise, the Industrial Union says without revealing yet the exact nature of the pay rise. The two new collective agreements are valid for three years and will come into effect as of 1 January 2022.

Helsinki (07.12.2021 - Heikki Jokinen) Violence and harassment at workplaces are not uncommon. Offences of this nature are more often directed at women than men, according to recent surveys.

Akava, the Confederation of Unions for Professional and Managerial Staff in Finland, and STTK, the Finnish Confederation of Professionals, both published at the end of November surveys on violence at workplaces.

The surveys in question provide similar results: violence or the threat of violence is a feature of working life. The Akava survey finds that 23 per cent of Akava members have faced violence or the threat of violence in their work in the last three years.

Helsinki (25.11.2021 - Heikki Jokinen) The steadfast action against an employers’ bogus "union" for those employed distributing unaddressed mail and free-sheet newspapers bears fruit.

The Finnish Post and Logistics Union PAU has succeeded in getting employers in the branch to pay hundreds of thousands euro in compensation for underpaying employees that were under a generally binding collective agreement.

Since 2009, there has been a generally binding collective agreement in the branch and all companies are obliged to follow it. Some employers were unhappy with it and set up their own "trade union" - the so-called yellow union - Suomen Mainosjakajien Etujärjestö SME.

Helsinki (18.11.2021 - Heikki Jokinen) At least three trade unions will cut their membership dues from the beginning of the next year.

JHL, the Trade Union for the Public and Welfare Sectors had already decided to cut dues from the current 1.38 per cent of taxable wage or salary to exactly one per cent. JHL will also introduce a cap on the union fee, 600 euro a year.

Jan Saarinen, JHL Director of finance says in the union press release that the union will compensate the loss of income from dues using the wealth the union has accumulated over the years. Services will not be cut.

The Industrial Union board unanimously proposed to their Union Council meeting at the end of November a similar move to one per cent due. At the moment the Industrial Union dues is 1.33 per cent of taxable income.