European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions
Together for decent work and fair pay from farm to fork

Happy 1 May | Why you're better off in a union!

28/04/2017

On Labor Day, EFFAT and the European Trade Union movement demand a pay rise for European workers and deliver one united message: You’re better off in a union! 

Last February the ETUC launched a pan European Pay Rise Campaign to demand a salary increase for European workers that can trickle up the economy and tackle inequalities.

There is a virtuous circle in which pay rises allow workers to spend more money on goods and services, which is good for business and creates jobs. While the crises has been left behind by chief executives and business, way too many workers still have NOT felt a recovery.

The best way to raise everyone’s wage is through collective bargaining and wide agreements that can cover as many workers as possible.

1 May is the occasion to remind ourselves of all victories Trade Unions achieved for a better and fairer society and conditions for all workers in Europe. Higher wages are not excluded.

Workers covered by a collective agreement are better off than workers in companies NOT covered by a collective agreement. They are more likely to get a fairer share of the profits generated, earn more money, get a holiday bonus and take part in company training. Furthermore organisations covered by a collective agreement have a smaller gender pay gap.

Just recently EFFAT affiliates, HRF and NGG have reached two important collective agreements in the Swedish hotel & restaurant and in the German food & drink sectors respectively. In Sweden a new agreement assures pay rise with a special investment on low wage workers and time to adjust if your working hours are being sliced. In Germany 8000 Coca-Cola workers are now entitled to increased remuneration and training allowance by 2.2% retroactive since 1 January 2017, and in some regions NGG members will benefit from 100 Euro more from 2018. 

EFFAT Secretary General wishes you a happy 1 May saying: ‘It is now a reality that union members are better paid than non-union members. A European pay rise is what European workers need right now to overcome the brutal consequences of the austerity policy. Through collective bargaining this can become reality”.

EFFAT is the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions. As a European Trade Union Federation representing 120 national trade unions from 35 European countries, EFFAT defends the interests of more than 22 million workers towards the European Institutions, European employers’ associations and transnational companies. EFFAT is a member of the ETUC and the European regional organisation of the IUF.