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Prime Minister will not support trade union demands for a shorter working week

Prime Minister Iveta Radičová said on January 11 that she cannot support one of the demands of trade unions which would shorten the current work week from 40 hours to 35 hours, a proposal the unions want enacted into the Labour Code, the SITA newswire reported.

Prime Minister Iveta Radičová said on January 11 that she cannot support one of the demands of trade unions which would shorten the current work week from 40 hours to 35 hours, a proposal the unions want enacted into the Labour Code, the SITA newswire reported.

Discussions about revisions to the Labour Code have been underway but the trade unions have recently refused to take part in the process. In a petition calling for a referendum on the government’s proposed changes to the Labour Code, unions are demanding that a shorter work week and that the reduction of five hours per week should not reduce the weekly wage.

The prime minister said that this solution would be economically unsustainable. There exists a great probability, according to her, that the shorter working week would automatically result in lower income. She said her government is prepared for a dialogue with the unions but not under pressure and threats. She further said that she remains in contact with the Trade Union Confederation at the tripartite level.

The prime minister also drew attention to the fact that the trade unions have signed an agreement on strategic cooperation with the opposition party Smer.

"They were invited to a working group for changes in the Labour Code, but they refused to participate", said Radičová as quoted by the SITA newswire. The petition the trade union launched on January 10 calls for a referendum on any changes to Slovakia's Labour Code as well as whether people support cutting work hours to 35 hours per week without a change
of salary as well as setting of the maximum overtime work at eighty hours per year.

Source: SITA

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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