ZAGREB, Oct 18 (Croatia Sun News) – The union in science and higher education on Friday announced that it would hold a day-long strike on October 24 demanding a wage increase for workers receiving the lowest wages in that sector in an effort to remove the pay gap between employees in the sector compared to those working in the civil service.
Lecturers and non-teaching staff, about 700 of them, will strike, union leader Vilim Ribic told a press conference calling on all research and teaching staff to join the strike as a sing of solidarity.
If the union demands are not resolved, the strike will be repeated on Wednesday, October 30, he said.
Ribic claimed that unions in the education sector deserved an increase of their base wage, however that increase is insufficient.
He said that 11 state administration and civil servants’ unions had come to an agreement to demand a double-digit (18.3%) pay increase of their base wage and that the 6.12% increase is just a starting point for negotiations on the base wage that are expected to start next week.
The unions are also seeking an increase in the job complexity index which Ribic said was reduced to 3% during the Social Democratic Party government and that the 4, 8 and 10% supplement on seniority be reinstated.
“Considering that that six percent is a starting position and that employees in education managed to obtain that, I appeal on all unions in the county in state administration and the civil service to go on strike in a sign of solidarity with those who are yet to get that,” Ribic said.
Macroeconomic analyst in the union, Matija Kroflin underscored that the union was seeking a 6.11% wage increase only for those members with the lowest earnings, for non-teaching positions in science and higher education facilities and a 3.5% increase for teaching staff.
Kroflin added that the union would not call for an increased job complexity index for full professors, associate professors or assistant professors or for teaching/research assistants.