On Thursday, the Management Board of the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS) started talks with trade unions about their demands. The main demands of the unions concern wage issues, including a salary increase, new tasks carried out by the Social Insurance Institution and working conditions.
In a press release sent to PAP, the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS) said that meetings with individual trade unions would be held on previously agreed dates.
Conversations with unions
The first round of talks started on Thursday. During the meeting, demands made by company trade unions under the Act on Resolving Collective Disputes are to be discussed.
The announcement emphasized that for the management of the Department, matters related to providing employees with appropriate working and pay conditions and appreciating the results of their work are a priority. That is why – added – “The plant is open to conducting talks with regard to all demands submitted by trade unions, however, not all demands may be the subject of a collective dispute.”
“The Management Board of the Department starts negotiations in good faith, counting on a constructive dialogue conducted with respect for the other party and in the spirit of seeking compromise solutions. At the same time, the Department hopes that the talks will lead to an agreement that will be beneficial for the employees of the Department” – wrote in statement.
It has been ensured that the discussions under the collective dispute do not affect the work of the Institute, which means that ZUS pays and will pay all benefits on time, including pensions and disability pensions.
At the end of July, the ZUS Workers’ Union turned to the president of the plant with twelve demands. The first is the increase from September 1 this year. base salaries of all ZUS employees by at least PLN 1,000 gross per full-time job.
Trade unionists also demand, inter alia, equip workstations with appropriate quality equipment improving the comfort of work (e.g. headphones, microphones, cameras, laptops or an appropriate number of scanners). They also want, until the restrictions related to an epidemic or epidemic threat are lifted, to provide the employees of the plant with an appropriate number of personal protective equipment. They also demand compliance with the implementation of employee vacation plans.
Other trade unions also entered into a collective dispute with the Social Insurance Institution, and NSZZ “Solidarność” in a letter to Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki demanded the resignation of ZUS president prof. Gertrude Uścińska.
Dispute at ZUS – president open to dialogue
President Uścińska, commenting on the dispute at the Social Insurance Institution, assured her that she was open to dialogue. As she pointed out, a detailed and comprehensive response to the demands of trade unionists has been prepared.
– The most important demand for a salary increase cannot be the subject of a collective dispute due to statutory provisions – the amount of remuneration is regulated in the applicable collective labor agreement. Nevertheless, the Management Board of the Department is constantly making efforts to raise employees’ salaries and improve their working conditions, and in this respect is open to cooperation with trade unions – said Prof. Uścińska.
She admitted that she was counting on constructive dialogue. – I hope that an agreement will be reached, because we act with concern for the common interest: the good of the employees of the plant and its customers. At the same time, I would like to reassure all our clients – benefits will be paid on time – assured the head of the Social Insurance Institution.
She pointed out that in recent years the salaries of ZUS employees have increased by nearly half. – We do everything to make the employees of the plant earn better and better. Only in 2015-2020, the fund for the salaries of our employees increased by almost PLN 1 billion. This is an unprecedented increase, thanks to which the average total salary in ZUS in 2020 was higher by PLN 434 than the average salary in the enterprise sector – indicated prof. Uścińska.
At the same time, she emphasized that ZUS is a state institution and its budget, including the amount of funds for remuneration, is determined by the government and parliament, and not by the management board of the Institute. – I am constantly striving to improve the financial situation of the employees of the Department – emphasized the president.
She indicated that “in recent years, ZUS has made a huge step forward, has become a modern office and has opened up to the needs of clients”.
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