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Street and parks maintenance workers end strike in Madrid

29 November 2013
© Photo by Sergio Rozas
In Madrid, Spain, street cleaners and park maintenance workers have returned to work following two weeks of strike action to protest the plans of private contractors to cut one in four jobs, which would have affected close to 1400 workers, plus force a pay cut of up to 40% on the remaining workers.

A deal was finally reached between unions – including PSI affiliates UGT-FSP and CCOO-FSC, and private companies that employ street cleaners, on 17 November.

Under the agreement hammered out in marathon talks, the companies agreed not to fire any workers in return for the employees accepting temporary unpaid lay-offs.

Madrid is under pressure to cut public service costs at a time when the whole country faces a strict austerity drive.

The strike led to surreal scenes on the streets of Madrid; mounds of rubbish grew high while collection services were suspended in the labour action. However, the city was quickly restored to normal when the strike ended.

"The workers approved the agreement by an absolute majority," said the CCOO labour union in a statement.

More on EPSU website

The Madrid unions' story (in Spanish)

Also see