Helsinki port with cranes
11.4.2024 15:12

SY slams continuation of strikes

Suomen Yrittäjät, the Finnish SME association, considers the continuation of the political strikes senseless and irresponsible.

The member trade unions of SAK announced on Wednesday 20 March that they would continue the current political strikes by another week, until Easter.

Mikael Pentikäinen, CEO of Suomen Yrittäjät, condemns the strikes as damaging to Finland, companies and their employees.

“Many people are going to go broke. In addition, SAK wants to cement generally binding collective agreements. This is senseless and irresponsible. We have a Government that enjoys the confidence of a parliamentary majority,” Pentikäinen says.

SAK had proposed to minister Satonen that collective agreements remain generally binding in the same sectors as now for ten years.

Representatives of both SAK and Suomen Yrittäjät met Labour Minister Arto Satonen (National Coalition Party) on 20 March. After the meeting, Satonen said he believed that a solution could be found for local bargaining. The minister said that the discussions could continue if fresh strikes did not begin.

However, SAK has chosen to continue the strikes, which have already gone on for over a week.

Janne Makkula, a vice president at Suomen Yrittäjät who is responsible for labour market affairs, is stunned that while SAK demands discussions on local bargaining and finding a solution, it has chosen to continue striking.

“This option was offered, on the condition that the strikes ended. This didn’t suit the unions, and the strikes continue,” Makkula says.

“The only conclusion to be drawn from this is that nothing suits SAK other than its own legislative power,” Makkula says.

Also on Wednesday, the newspaper Helsingin Sanomat wrote that according to its sources, SAK had in practice made the decision to continue the strikes on Tuesday, a day before meeting minister Satonen.

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