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Agreement signed13th of September 2011
Anna Garbagna reports from Italy on a new collective agreement for the cleaning sector that was recently signed.
At the end of May, contract cleaning association FISE Anip, four other sector organisations and the trade unions signed an agreement for the renewal of the National Collective Labour Agreement (CCNL) for cleaning and integrated/multiservice companies.
In July, because the summons from the Ministry of Employment had not been received, the enforcement of the agreement was temporarily suspended, as well as the implementation of the pay rise that was to take effect from June.
The negotiation for the renewal of the agreement CCNL 19/12/2007 took place during a difficult time for the market in a sector which has experienced moments of economic stagnation caused, among other reasons, by the cost of labour which is disproportionately high compared to other costs and investments.
Another element of difficulty for the negotiations was the difficult relationship between the several trade unions.
Solutions to problems
The negotiations started in May 2010 with the objective to find solutions for the sector’s problems as well as the negotiations for the contract’s renewal. Everything was set on a 'light' kind of exchange, without the involvement of 'heavy' and awkward issues which would have lengthened the negotiations.
The CCNL contract will expire on April 30 2013 (four months longer than the standard duration) and it will include the regulations aspect as well as the economic aspect.
Among the main aspects of the provisional agreement, the national contract will have, as mentioned before, a three-year duration without halfway deadlines; as far the second level of negotiation is concerned, some matters that could be the subject of discussion have been identified. Postponement, finalised to 'contrast possible abnormal forms of absenteeism' and properly used, could have great importance.
Regulate leave periods
Regarding different aspects of the negotiation, for the first time it has been acknowledged that there is a need to regulate periods of leave within the contract. This intervention is aimed at regulating the matter, which became necessary because of the constant increase in the use of unauthorised leave. This increases costs and complicates the management of companies.
As far as other aspects are concerned, there have been improvements in the regulations regarding dispensation of weekly days off and full-time working hours, (to be calculated as an average out of six months instead of four), and the removal of the replacement allowance of the notice in the case of worker’s transfer during a change of the contract.
Sense of responsibility
Among the other key topics on which an agreement has been achieved, are: range of application, fixed-term work contracts, part-time work contracts, health and safety in workplaces, right of education, salary, maternity leave, parental leave and healthcare.
“The renewal of CCNL,” as Massimo Diamante, vice president of FISE Anip has emphasised, “is, with the appropriate conditions, an action owed to a sector which still strives to be structured and adequately represented. It has been a negotiating platform where, with a great sense of responsibility, the parties have taken into consideration this time of unfavourable prevailing economic trends”.