Local government unions and employers have reached provisional agreement on a new pay deal for bin collectors and council wardens, clearing the way to end the current wave of strikes.
Rubbish collectors are currently on strike in Amsterdam and were to strike in Den Bosch and Maastricht from Wednesday. There were earlier strikes in The Hague, Utrecht and Rotterdam.
The local authorities’ association VNG has now agreed to a €240 per month pay increase for all staff plus a 2% rise across the board. Local government workers will also get an extra day off this year and May 5 will be an official holiday from 2024.
The deal is an effective pay rise of 12% to 13% for bin collectors, and 8% for higher-paid staff, the unions said.
‘The men and women of city waste collection and cleaning services have shown in the past few weeks that we cannot do without them, but that they are struggling to make ends meet,’ Juan Schot from the CNV trade union federation told broadcaster NOS.
Amsterdam finance chief Hester van Buren, who helped broker the deal, said she was pleased a deal has been reached. ‘The strike is at an end but has made everyone in Amsterdam aware of how important these people are for a clean, safe, liveable city.’
The clean up in the capital after two days of strikes will take some time, she said.
No deal has yet been reached between transport unions and regional bus and train services, where strikes are now ongoing. Workers at some 50 hospitals are also set to stop work in support of their pay claim.
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