Bloomberg News

Estonian Teachers May Strike for Three Days Over Wages in March

February 13, 2012

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Estonian teachers and day-care workers will strike for as long as three days next month after talks with the government over wages broke down.

The strike will start on March 7, with the duration to be set later, Sven Rondik, head of Estonia’s Education Personnel Union, said today in a statement.

The union wants a 20 percent increase in teachers’ wages in 2012 and 15 percent in both 2013 and 2014, according to its website. This year’s move would bring gross monthly salaries up to 730 euros ($965) from 608 euros for junior teachers and to 1,067 euros from 889 euros for the most senior teachers. Average monthly wages in Estonia were 809 euros in the third quarter.

The union has repeatedly criticized the government for freezing teachers’ salaries, protesting at parliament in October after the Cabinet rejected wage demands while the Baltic nation grew at the fastest pace in the 27-member European Union. This year’s budget doesn’t allow for an increase in teachers’ wages, according to the government, which is planning a deficit of 2.1 percent of gross domestic product.

--Editors: Andrew Langley, Andrew Atkinson

To contact the reporter on this story: Ott Ummelas in Tallinn at oummelas@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net


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