Brasil - Brazilian bank workers go on strike for wages and working conditions
Brazilian bank workers from public and private banks all over the country go on strike from this Tuesday, Oct 30, for undetermined time. Following the National Leadership’s recommendation, coordinate by Contraf-CUT, the decision was taken by local assemblies organized by bank workers’ unions on Monday, which confirmed the decisions of Sept 25 assemblies and rejected the banks’ proposal presented on Saturday 27 by Fenaban, the employers’ organization. It increased the initial proposal from 7% increase on wages to 7.35% (0.94% real increase) and from 7.5% to 8% the increase on wage floors (1.55% above inflation).
"Besides the fact that the proposal of raise does not meet the expectation of bank workers, the proposal does not address the non-economic demands, which are essential for us, job stability, end of abusive sales targets and moral harassment, workers’ security and equal opportunities. We want more from the banks. Here in Brazil they have the highest profitability in the entire international financial system, "says Carlos Cordeiro, president of Contraf-CUT and coordinator of the National Leadership.
Only the six largest banks (Bank of Brazil, Itaú, Bradesco, Caixa Economica Federal, Santander and HSBC), which together hold more than 85% of financial system assets and employ over 90% of bank employees, had net income of R $ 56.7 billion in 2013 and an additional $ 28.5 billion in the first half of this year.
"To achieve these stratospheric profits, banks have been dismissing workers and using turnover to reduce the average wage of workers and submit them to abusive sales targets, which often lead to the practice of moral harassment," said Carlos Cordeiro. As a result, 18,600 workers went on sick leave affected by working related diseases in 2013 (an increase of 41% over the past five years), more than half of them diagnosed with mental disorders and nervous system - diseases that have grown 64 3% since 2008.
With the decision of the assemblies organised by unions, which represent the vast majority of bank workers throughout the country, Contraf-CUT sent an official letter to Fenaban (National Federation of Banks), communicating the rejection of the banks’ proposals and the ratification of the decision of the workers’ meetings of the 25th for striking for undetermined time from this Tuesday on. "We want to state that we are open to resume negotiations to seek a new proposal that meets the expectations of bank workers," the document states.
The National Leadership of Bank Workers is formed by Contraf-CUT, ten regional federations and 134 local unions across the country, representing more than 90% of the 511,000 bankworkers of public and private banks
MAIN BANK WORKERS’ DEMANDS
Wage increase of 12.5%
Wage floor of R $ 2,979.25
Profit Share : three monthly wages of bonus plus an additional amount of R $ 6,247 .
14th salary .
Food stamps , meal , food - basket , basket and 13th day care assistance / nanny : R $ 724.00 per month for each (minimum wage ) .
Bank teller’s wage floor : R $ 1,042.74 .
Management position additional payment: 70 % of salary effective position .
Culture Stamps (for cinemas, theaters and cultural events) : R $ 112.50 for all .
End of abusive goals .
Tackling moral harassment .
Equal rights for workers on sick leave
Keep health insurance for retired workers
Employment : end of dismissals and turnover , hiring of more employees , ban on unmotivated layoffs as required by ILO Convention 158 , tackling outsourcing .
Career Plan for all bank workers
Education financing : payment of tuition for workers’ higher education .
Preventing bank robberies and kidnappings : compliance with Law 7102 / 83 that requires that a security plan in bank branches and service stations , ensuring at least two security guards throughout the opening hours of the banks ; installation of revolving doors with metal detector at the entrance of the areas of ATMs ;
Equal opportunities for all workers, putting an end to discrimination in wages and career progression of women, Afro-Brazilians , gays , lesbians , transsexuals and people with disabilities.