Friday, July 1

Torrent: “The Government’s labor reform is not what Catalonia needs”

  • The ERC leader claims to incorporate into the labor reform agreement elements such as the administrative authorization of the eres, the processing salaries or the increase in compensation for dismissal

ERC ambitions to incorporate draft modifications to the labour reform agreed between the Government and the social agents in exchange for their support to it. “The labor reform is not the one that Catalonia needs”, declared the ‘minister’ of Empresa i Treball, Roger Torrent, at the press conference after Executive Council of this Tuesday. The Republican leader lacks elements such as the administrative authorization of the eres, the processing salaries or the increase in compensation for dismissal, in line with what was stated by the ‘president’ of the Government, Pere Aragonès.

Republicans demand substantive changes that would affect one of the pillars of the reform of the PP of 2012 that has not touched the new reform of the coalition government: the dismissal. An issue that within the coalition itself generated dissent and that was never raised with the employers in order to retain them at the negotiating tables and end up reaching an agreement with them.

Despite the fact that Torrent has valued “that the text has been the result of consultation with social agents”, he also asks to touch on various aspects related to the dismissal in exchange for his parliamentary support, potentially necessary to carry out the law legislatively. Something that, on the other hand, could cause the CEOE to drop the agreement if these changes are incorporated.

Torrent has shelled the main demands of the Republicans, which collide with the demands from the Executive of not introducing significant changes in the text agreed with the social agents. ERC wants to recover the administrative authorization of the eres, a competence that the labor authority had before the reform of the PP and that allowed it to veto collective dismissals. A competition that, according to Torrent, would allow the Generalitat to reinforce “mediation” mechanisms and propose “alternatives to closure”, as in the recent case of the factory. Mahle (Vilanova i la Geltrú).

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In that perimeter of the dismissal, the republicans ambition to recover the compensation of 45 days per year worked for indefinite contracts that the PP lowered to the current 33 days. And recover the processing salaries, which are those that were charged by the workers dismissed in an improper or null way after suing the company for their termination and winning it judicially.

Another element that Torrent has put on the table is to reinforce the primacy of regional agreements over state agreements, a demand shared between ERC and PNV (key both in the parliamentary majorities) and that it was one of the red lines of the CEOE during negotiations. In fact, the bosses’ leadership sold their associates the withdrawal of this point from the previous drafts of the Government as one of the arguments to join the tripartite agreement.

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