Danish Public Sector workers have been threatened with lockout by their employer after Collective Bargaining negotiations on new terms in pay and conditions stalled. 10% of public sector workers may strike and the remaining 90% of workers were threatened with a lock-out. The action is on hold at the moment as discussions are taking place through the Danish Labour Relations system in an attempt to resolve the dispute.
IFUT have sent the following letter of support to our Danish colleagues:
Dear Friends & Colleagues,
On behalf of the Irish Federation of University Teachers (IFUT) we send you our warm greetings of friendship and solidarity in the difficult and important campaign which you are now engaged in.
We support and applaud your justified fight for better working conditions for public employees in Denmark, especially (for us) those who are employed in the education sector.
We are appalled that in retaliation for your reasonable actions you are now being threatened with a lockout. This response is totally incompatible with the principles of social dialogue and collective bargaining based upon mutual respect which is supposed to be the cornerstone of the Danish approach to industrial relations.
Considering that the threat of a lockout is hanging over 90% of state employees and 50% of municipal employees despite the fact that only 10% of public workers are covered by the proposed limited strike action leads one to the suspicion that there is another, sinister, agenda being pursued here.
The lockout threat is totally disproportionate and very worrying and it is likely to bring the authorities in Denmark in to international disrepute. We sincerely hope that those responsible will pull back from this disastrous course and engage with you and your colleagues in a dialogue based on mutual respect and adherence to the norms of responsible behaviour.
Please let us know if there is any practical way in which we, your Irish colleagues, can assist you in your quest for a fair outcome.
With best regards,
Joan Donegan, General Secretary, Irish Federation of University Teachers
Mike Jennings, Treasurer, ETUCE