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Bank union demands pay raises, 35-hour week

Raises, restoration of rights and a 35-hour  working week are the demands of the approximately 10,000 bank employees, expressed through the Cyprus Union of Bank Employees (ETYK).

Specifically, the ETYK leadership sent a letter to the banks on December 31, 2016, the last day the latest collective agreement was in effect. The letter made known the demands of the union regarding the renewal of the collective agreement for the 2017-2019 period.

The ETYK demands focus on salary raises, arguing that in the past years salaries have decreased by 15% on average.

The union also demands that benefits are restored to their pre-2013 levels, having been cut back in the previous collective agreement.

In addition, ETYK demands that the working week be cut down to 35 hours, as opposed to the current 37-hour working week.

ETYK aims to also redistribute the working hours to make them more efficient, along with a push for changes in the training and evaluation of bank employees.

The upcoming negotiations will certainly be difficult for ETYK, since it will be the first time in its history that it will have to negotiate with each bank separately after the dissolution of the Banks Association.

On their end, banks have also sent letters to ETYK, making their own demands known to the union.

Negotiations are expected to begin sometime between the end of January and beginning of February.

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