Lithuanian unions contest the policies of Government

Today Lithuanian trade unions presented joint requirements to Government of the Republic of Lithuania, Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania, and
copy to the President of the Republic of Lithuania:

Lithuanian Trade Unions requirements

Lithuanian trade unions contest the economic, financial and social policy of the ruling majority and the Government that has impoverished the majority of population and drive people to emigrate.

For the fourth year, the Lithuanian Government repeatedly reassure the people that this policy will help to deal with economic, social and financial downturn. Unfortunately, this is done at the expense of labor taxation, disruption of small businesses and public sector, impoverishment of the population. For some time unemployment figures remain unchanged with more than 213 thousand people unemployed, every fifth resident of Lithuania lives below the poverty line, middle class is becoming non existent, while workers are paid a minimum wage and can not adequately provide for their families. During 2010 the Lithuanian population decreased by more than 84 thousand. Since twenty years of independence, more than half a million people left Lithuania.

Trade unions are indignant with ongoing initiatives to liberalize labor relations, such as: simplification of redundancies, cancellation of severance payments in case of dismissals, extension of working hours. Lithuanian Trade Unions note the fact that the right to go on strikes exists formally only as the trade union leaders are being prosecuted.

We are convinced about the need of essential welfare visions instead of bureaucratic show type ones. Therefore, we demand to:

- Increase the minimum wage to 1000 LTL from 1st of January 2012.
- Increase the basic monthly salary for the budget sector workers’ and the basic amount of civil servant’s salary.
- Increase employment by creating new jobs.
- Reduce labor taxes.
- Restore state pensions for officials and soldiers, as well as compensation costs for the employees of theater and concert facilities.
- Restart payments for low-income families raising children.
- Introduce the progressive taxation system to reduce social exclusion.
- Reduce the costs for heat, electricity and the essential food products.
- Make amendments to labor legislation only after having reached the agreement with trade unions and employers organizations.
- Ratify the International Labor Organization (ILO) Convention 102 on minimum social protection standards.
- Ensure the freedom of association, meetings, demonstrations and other public ways to express people’s will.
- Ensure the right of workers to go on strike, to prevent the prosecution of workers’ representatives.
- Ensure the real right of citizens to hold a referendum.
In deliberating the budget for the year 2012, we demand to provide resourses for the solution of major problems of the country, i.e. unemployment and poverty.
Lithuanian trade unions are prepared for negotiations with the Lithuanian Government on the timeline of the implementation of the above listed requirements and measures.

Joint Trade Union
Klaipėda Town and Region Trade Union
Lithuanian Labor Federation
Lithuanian Medical Workers Employees Trade Union
Lithuanian Trade Union Confederation
Lithuanian Trade „Solidarumas“
Lithuanian Trade Union Unification „Sandrauga“
Lithuanian Education Employees Trade Union
National association of officials’ Trade Union of the Republic of Lithuania