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Antti Palola, the chairperson of the Finnish Confederation of Salaried Employees (STTK), says wage earners have already done their share to improve the employment situation in Finland. (Credit: Liisa Valonen)
Antti Palola, the chairperson of the Finnish Confederation of Salaried Employees (STTK), says wage earners have already done their share to improve the employment situation in Finland. (Credit: Liisa Valonen)

 

Antti Palola, the chairperson of the Finnish Confederation of Salaried Employees (STTK), has reiterated his opposition to a government bill that would make laying off easier for businesses with no more than 20 employees.

“Just go ahead and stop speaking about a compromise on this issue!” he tweeted. “STTK will not approve the bill – whatever the number – and demands that the government abandon the whole project.”

The Finnish government has recently floated the possibility of amending the much-criticised bill by lowering the maximum limit for employees from 20 to 10. STTK on Monday revealed that as many as 65 per cent of respondents to its survey are opposed to the idea of making laying off easier for businesses.

Palola has repeatedly drawn attention to labour market reforms – such as the competitiveness pact and the activation model for unemployment security – introduced by the government of Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre).

“Enough is enough,” he states in a press release from STTK.

“The government has to abandon its proposal. Reducing protection against unilateral termination will not promote trust but rather fears and misgivings. Arguments, suspensions and labour market disturbances would similarly increase.”

STTK also voiced its puzzlement with how stubbornly the government is continuing to erode the terms and conditions of employment of wage earners in light of the fact that earners have over the past couple of years agreed to a number of difficult decisions to increase employment.

“The government is uninterested in expert estimates, which suggest that reducing protection against termination at small businesses would not improve the employment situation. This is about ideologies and stirring up fear in the final stretch of the term in office, rather than promoting good working life,” says Palola.

Three member unions of STTK, the Union of Health and Social Care Professionals (Tehy), Trade Union Pro and the Federation of Public and Private Sector Employees (Jyty), have announced their readiness to take action if the bill moves forward.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: Uusi Suomi

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