Staff at the Volkswagen car plant in the Bratislava borough of Devínska Nová Ves are on strike alert as of Monday, October 1, following a disagreement with the employer over their demands, the TASR newswire learnt.
Among other things, the plant's employees want a pay increase of 6.8 percent as of January 2013, head of the plant's trade unions Zoroslav Smolinský said, adding that the plant suggests that salaries be upped by only 3.2 percent. The trade unions also request that break times be extended and that work conditions be improved. "We demand that the social and financial standing of the employees be improved. The employer isn't heeding our requests. We got stuck in the ninth round of bargaining, and so we've declared a strike alert," said Smolinský.
Volkswagen Slovakia has proposed to increase salaries at the plant in Bratislava by 3.2 percent as of January 2013, along with two payments of €100, company spokesman Vladimir Machalík said. The draft of the Collective Agreement also contains all previous benefits provided by the company, such as the summer holiday contribution amounting to 60 percent of the monthly salary, and the Christmas bonus in the amount of 100 percent of the monthly salary, said Machalík.
The trade unions say they are ready for more talks but at the same time do not dismiss the possibility of a full-blown strike – something that has never taken place in Slovak industry.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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