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Long wage dispute with day care workers ends

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Photo: DPA
17:45 CEST+02:00
The long wage dispute between 220,000 public day care workers and state employers ended with an agreement in Frankfurt on Monday.

Parents no longer have to contend with last-minute strikes in their day care centres after months of failed negotiations. Education and Science Workers' Union (GEW) and public workers' union Verdi agreed with employers on a wage increase of up to 10 percent for educators and a more than €250 per month for social workers.

Employers were apparently also moved by the unions to grant health care requests, namely the individual right of workers to a health risk assessment for their jobs, head negotiator for civil servants' union DBB Willi Russ said.

The agreement increases costs for state employers by between €500 million and €700 million per year, President of the German Association of Municipal Employers (VKA) Thomas Böhle said.

Additional costs are “hardly affordable in the dramatic financial situations of the municipalities,” head of the German Association of Towns and Municipalities (DStGB) Gerd Landsberg said, adding that tuition-free public day care centres, or Kitas, could no longer be an option.

Negotiations began in May and failed several times, sparking repeated nationwide strikes.

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Union members still need to approve the agreement, which negotiators said would likely take place on Monday.

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