Trade Union News from Finland
Tekijä (13.09.2023 - Heikki Jokinen) Since June, Finland has had a very right-wing government led by PM Petteri Orpo. It combines swinging the balance in the labour market in favour of employers and company owners with making life harder for immigrants.
As one of their most urgent tasks, the government plans to curb the right to strike this autumn. One plan is to limit the right to conduct political strikes. According to the Government Programme, this right shall be limited to one day.
The same urgency concerns union solidarity actions. These should be "proportionate in relation to the objectives" and "only affect the parties to the labour dispute". This would mean goodbye to solidarity actions for weaker unions in need.
Tekijä (13.09.2023 - Heikki Jokinen) The right to strike is one of the most crucial instruments in the trade union movement’s toolbox. It is the last resort for wage and salary earners should collective bargaining fail.
The Finnish constitution guarantees the freedom to organise in a trade union. The right to strike is also guaranteed under Finnish legislation.
A strike means employees temporarily stop work. It can be a total work stoppage or cover only some part of the work done in the company or in the branch. The union decides the form, length and coverage of the strike. A strike is always a collective measure, not individual.
Tekijä (16.08.2023 - Heikki Jokinen) Solidarity is an important part of the trade union movement DNA. Not only for members in their own countries, but also for the poor and exploited people throughout the world.
Trade union activity can be dangerous. According to the global trade union movement organisation ITUC, union activists were murdered in 13 countries in 2022. All kinds of harassment is commonplace, too, like battery, arrest and baseless dismissal.
The Industrial Union supports many trade union and working life projects around the world. These are financed from the Union budget.
Tekijä (16.08.2023 - Heikki Jokinen) Do the union development projects have real, concrete results? Are they really improving working peoples' life?
The answer is yes. In March, three Finnish researchers published a three-year study of the Trade Union Solidarity Centre of Finland SASK project in Mozambique. SASK supported five local trade unions to organise training for employees and their representatives. These unions also covered the industry work.
The researchers compared working places where the training was given with those without it. The results of the study were clear. Even short two days training did help to improve terms of work.
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