Latvian trade union of medics agreed to call off strike

GMT 10:18 2015 Thursday ,26 November

Arab Today, arab today Latvian trade union of medics agreed to call off strike

Off strike

After tough negotiations with the Health Ministry, the Latvian trade union of medics agreed to call off a strike it was going to stage over insufficient funding, the union's leader Valdis Keris told reporters Wednesday.

The strike has been canceled under a written agreement reached by the Latvian Trade Union of Health and Social Care Employees and the Health Ministry, Keris said.

The deal between the medics' union and the ministry also provides for raising medics' wages by at least 5 percent next year. The Health Ministry had initially proposed a 3.5 percent pay raise, while the medics' insisted on a 10 percent pay increase for 2016.

The final decision on the health sector's funding, however, lies with the parliament which has to approve a 10 million euros (10.62 million U.S. dollars) allocation for the wage increase demanded by the medics.

The trade union and the ministry also agreed to form a joint workgroup which would be working to secure more money for the medics' wages.

Describing the current funding earmarked for the Latvian health sector as "utterly unacceptable," Keris said there still was hope for additional allocations when the government amends the national budget in the middle of 2016.

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