Press release from Efling – union and the Federation of General and Special workers in Iceland (SGS).
SGS and Efling received a letter from the Federation of Local Authorities (SÍS) shortly after noon, where it was announced that the local authorities had made a unilateral decision to refer the current wage negotiations to the state mediator. The reason given and referred to is a resolution passed in honor of the women’s holiday during the general meeting of SGS, which took place last week. Said resolution covered the status of unskilled working women and the status of the wage negotiations.
The local authorities seem to think it necessary to sever negotiations with SGS and Efling when they tell it like it is and prove unafraid to fight for reasonable rights and better wages for their members. The committee negotiating on behalf of the local authorities were not even brave enough to mention this decision during a meeting or to contact us directly as their counter-parties in negotiations.
This is rather in keeping with their conduct and discourse since the expiration of the previous agreements in April, whether in connection with the equalization of pension rights, deposits, the scheduling of talks or other matters. This letter exposes a strange view; not to consider it “bad treatment of women’s professions and evidence of a bottomless disregard for their wellbeing during the current talks” to refuse to engage with the demands of this group, to refer part of these talks to the authorities and to show absolutely no understanding for our concerns.
SGS will not be intimidated from passing resolutions during its general meetings about the concerns of our members or from standing firm with regards to our natural and reasonable demands. It’s clear, however, that this message from the local authorities in no way contributes to the resolution of this serious dispute and SÍS will be solely responsible for the possible resultant consequences.