Gov’t announces salary hike offer for civil servants, biggest union rejects
ANKARAThe Turkish government has announced its salary hike for millions of civil servants and retired civil servants in Turkey for 2018 and 2019 as 3 percent for each six-month period.
The offer, which was announced by the Labor and Social Security Minister Jülide Sarıeroğlu on Aug. 14, was immediately rejected by the Civil Servants’ Trade Union (Memur-Sen).
The minister said the government’s offer is a 3 percent salary hike for civil servants and retired civil servants for each six-month period in the upcoming two years, adding that an additional payment would be made to them if the inflation rate exceeds this hike.
“We put a 16 percent hike for 2018 and an 18 percent hike for 2019 on the table. We do not find the government’s offer to be negotiated. We expect new offers,” Memur-Sen head Ali Yalçın.
He also noted that civil servants’ purchasing power declined dramatically as salary hikes regressed under the current inflation rate, asking for the payment of an inflationary gap on monthly basis.
Discussions between labor unions and the government over salary hikes for 3.2 million civil servants and 1.9 million retired civil servants in Turkey for 2018 and 2019 began on Aug. 1.
Representatives from the public employers committee, Memur-Sen, the Turkish Public Workers’ Labor Union (Kamu-Sen) and the Confederation of Public Sector Trade Unions (KESK) are attending the talks, which are chaired by Sarıeroğlu.
The parties have time to continue negotiations until Aug. 21. If a deal is not clinched, an arbitration panel will step in.
Memur-Sen is proposing a 10 percent increase in the first six months of 2018 and 6 percent in the second six months of 2018 while demanding a 10 percent increase in the first six months of 2019 and 8 percent for the other six months of 2019. The union also launched two other alternatives.
KESK, meanwhile, is demanding at least 3,450 Turkish Liras as salary for public workers.
Kamu-Sen asked for an additional net 150 lira payment, 10 percent increase for each six month of 2018 and an additional 3 percent “economic growth” payment. For 2019, the union asked for another net 150 lira of additional payment, 8 percent increase for each six months and an additional 3 percent “economic growth” payment.