New major collective agreement for the municipal sector health and social care workers

Helsinki (16.06.2021 – Heikki Jokinen) From September 2021, Finland will have a new major collective agreement for the municipal sector social and health care workers. This agreement covers some 180,000 employees, more than 40 per cent of local authority employees.

Right now municipal sector social and health care workers are still part of the big General Collective Agreement for Municipal Personnel (KVTES). It covers a total of 421,000 employees.

Tehy – The Union of Health and Social Care Professionals in Finland and Super – the Finnish Union of Practical Nurses have been demanding for a long time their own collective agreement for municipal social and health care workers.

The decision was reached in spring 2020. When negotiating for the new KVTES collective agreement a part of the deal agreed was to draft a separate collective agreement for the municipal sector social and health care workers, effective from September 2021.

Now, after one year of negotiations this agreement is ready and Tehy’s council accepted it in June. The Super board accepted the agreement in June, too.

“A completely new collective agreement for the municipal sector means that sector specific problems can finally be discussed at our own negotiation table. This is the result of an enormous amount of work and a long time goal of Tehy. Without a doubt, a historic moment”, says Tehy President Millariikka Rytkönen.

So far the terms of work of for instance nurses, librarians and janitors have been the same, Rytkönen says. “Now we can focus in earnest on developing pay and terms of work for the social and health care sector.”

Tehy Council in June also re-elected, unanimously, Millariikka Rytkönen to continue as Tehy President until 2025. A Social Democrat, she has been working as a midwife and is Tehy President since 2017.

Social Democrats made major progress in the Tehy elections in April, from 30 seats in the 2017 elections to 41 now in the 83 seats strong union council. Together with the seven seats of the Left Alliance the council now has a left-wing majority.

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