Swedish workers call strike

20 March 2008

More Than 800 employees of Swedish contractor Peab went on strike in mid-April, after talks on a new collective bargaining agreement with Sweden's construction federation, Sveriges Byggindustrier, collapsed. The workers, from 46 sites across the country, were members of construction workers union, Byggnads.

The industry had been calling for shorter working hours and increased wages for its 128000 members.

The strike lasted four days, and did not encompass other major contractors in Sweden such as Skanska, NCC and JM, although Bygnadds had threatened to call employees of these companies out on strike too.

In the end the union won concessions on shorter working hours for 2008 and 2009. The employers however won an important victory by keeping the Byggnads ‘inspection fee' out of the agreement. Under this arrangement 1,5% of all construction workers salaries would be paid to Byggnads as a way of the union ensuring correct wages were being paid.

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