Are Police Officers Going to Strike Next?

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, November 20, 2019 – The Police Officers Union (SPS) on Tuesday supported a strike by education unions and announced a protest rally and a strike to fight for a better financial and social status of police.

The SPS said in a press release it was showing solidarity with teachers in their fight for a better financial and social status which, it added, they deserve.

Police officers are in a similar situation as they are underpaid and at the bottom of the social ladder, the only difference being that education workers have unanimous and agile representative unions which negotiate with arguments and can’t be bought or cheated, the SPS said.

Police have representative unions of state administration employees “who only nod and sign what they are offered.”

The SPS accused the Interior Ministry top brass of discriminating against non-representative unions for years and agreeing “certain things under the table at the expense of police officers,” with the three representative unions.

The SPS will poll police about participating in protests and a strike. Depending on the results, the union will launch actions which will “intensify when Croatia chairs the Council of the European Union” in the first half of 2020.

Independent Croatian Trade Unions (NHS) president Krešimir Sever also supported the protesting school unions.

However, the Croatian Police Union (SPH) on Tuesday dismissed the claim that “representative trade unions should join the ill-advised police strike organised by a smaller union,” saying that non-representative unions could not call a legal strike.

“The wage base and the wage amount for police officers are regulated by the collective agreement, and the Labour Act clearly provides that only representative unions are entitled to call a strike to amend the law. The SPH reserves its right to industrial action and recalls that it has organised strikes and protests whenever that was necessary. We will decide on this on our own in accordance with our internal organisation and the trust placed in us by our membership, the largest among state services,” the SPH said on its website.

It said that it would continue to use its negotiating power in negotiations with the employer.

“As far as the current government is concerned, we have been negotiating basically since the start of its term. We have managed to reinstate some of the rights that were lost during the terms of previous governments. We continue to work on improving the financial status of police officers, while the issue of equipment and work conditions has already been greatly improved. We will not give up our main goal of increasing the starting salary for police officers to the present index of 1.00, and in that fight, we will use all legitimate means. We will decide on the timing and method ourselves,” the union said.

More strike news can be found in the Business section.


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