Tariffs: Collective bargaining for public sector continued

In the public service wage dispute, both sides met on Saturday for the fourth round of negotiations in Potsdam.

Tariffs: Collective bargaining for public sector continued

In the public service wage dispute, both sides met on Saturday for the fourth round of negotiations in Potsdam. Since midday, the federal government, the municipalities, the German civil servants' association dbb and the Verdi trade union have been negotiating the arbitration decision published last week in the deadlocked wage dispute. It was unclear whether a compromise could be reached.

The arbitration recommendation initially provides for tax and duty-free special payments of 3,000 euros in several stages. From March 2024 there will then be a base amount of 200 euros and then a wage increase of 5.5 percent. If no increase of 340 euros is achieved, the relevant increase amount should be set to this sum.

Faeser is confident

When she arrived in Potsdam, Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) expressed her confidence that an agreement could be reached in the near future. Municipalities, in particular, which have very different financial resources, are skeptical about the arbitrators' proposal. "This is an arbitration recommendation that, in terms of type and scope, clearly exceeds anything that has ever been called for in recent decades," said Karin Welge, President of the Association of Municipal Employers' Associations (VKA).

The trade unions, in turn, initially assessed the arbitrators' proposal as a good basis for the fourth round of talks. Nevertheless, there is still a need for discussion, emphasized Verdi boss Frank Werneke shortly before the meeting. Some points, such as regulations on part-time employees or training allowances, are not considered in the recommendation.

For months, the bargaining parties have been struggling over the income of 2.5 million federal and local employees. Verdi and the civil servants' association dbb had declared the third round of negotiations at the end of March to have failed. The VKA and the Federal Ministry of the Interior then called the arbitration.

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