On Monday, Verdi will enter the third round of collective bargaining for around 2.5 million public sector workers. The union demands 10.5 percent and at least 500 euros more monthly salary. The employer's offer from the second round of negotiations was completely inadequate, said Verdi boss Frank Werneke.
Before the start of the round of negotiations, Verdi wanted to make it clear "that our demands have broad support among the workforce." That will be visible on Monday. Nationwide, 120,000 employees were called to go on strike from midnight on Monday night.
According to the union, all commercial airports are affected except in Berlin, inland waterways and ports such as the Port of Hamburg. Munich Airport is suspending air traffic for Sunday and Monday.
There is also a strike in local public transport in Baden-Württemberg, Hesse, Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saxony, Rhineland-Palatinate and parts of Bavaria. Strikes at the motorway company could also lead to the closure of road tunnels, such as the Elbe tunnel.
In rail transport, 230,000 employees have been called to industrial action: 180,000 at Deutsche Bahn, the rest at private railways and other companies. The railway said that long-distance traffic would be "completely" stopped. Also in regional traffic there will be no trains for the most part. Tickets booked for Monday and the following day can therefore be canceled free of charge or used flexibly until next Saturday.
The EVG is currently in collective bargaining with Deutsche Bahn and around 50 other companies. Over a period of one year, she calls for wage increases of a total of twelve percent, but at least 650 euros as a "social component". In the negotiations, however, the union felt "not taken seriously enough," said EVG boss Martin Burkert. The employers "closed all eyes to the economic needs of the employees".
The railway criticized the call for a strike as "groundless and unnecessary". The EVG must "immediately return to the negotiating table," said Bahn HR Director Martin Seiler. The group had "submitted a responsible offer" and was "ready to talk at any time". The next regular hearing at the end of April is far too late.
However, the union ruled out previous negotiations. "DB agreed with us on April 24th/25th as the next date for negotiations. It will stay that way."
The association of municipal employers' associations denounced an "unreasonable escalation". In the negotiations with Verdi, there was an offer "on the basis of which we wanted to continue negotiations in February," explained VKA negotiator Karin Welge. The date of the hearing on Monday has now been "determined for a long time".
The airport association ADV criticized the call by the unions as "strike escalation based on the French model". The trade unions said goodbye to the proven tradition that solutions are reached at the negotiating table in Germany, explained managing director Ralph Beisel. The announced actions "go beyond every imaginable and justifiable measure".
"The strikes hit hundreds of thousands of travellers, some even at the start of the Easter holidays in Bremen and Lower Saxony," complained the Federal Association of the German Tourism Industry. "Not only mobility providers suffer from such strikes, but also other tourism companies such as travel agencies or hotels."
Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing (FDP) emphasized the importance of the public transport sector for Germany. "I can only appeal to all collective bargaining partners to be aware of their responsibility and to keep the impact on the population as low as possible," he told the editorial network Germany.