All-Ukrainian Protest March «European prices – European wages!»
On 6 June tens of thousands of trade union members and workers from all over Ukraine gathered in Kyiv for the All-Ukrainian Protest March, pickets and rallies near the Parliament and Government of Ukraine under the slogan «European prices – European wages!»
Almost seven thousand education workers joined the protest action.
They responded to the call launched at the meeting of the Council of Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine (FPU) on 23 June. The Council elaborated joint trade union position concerning shock increases in gas price and communal tariffs, and adopted a plan of actions to protect workers.
Marchers protested against shock increases in gas prices for the population, tariffs for hot water and heating, expected increases in tariffs for electricity and cold water, against the state policy of shock therapy, austerity measures at the expense of workers and demanded radical increases in wages and pensions.
Addressing the protesters FPU President Grygoriy Osoviy stressed that the question is not only about reducing prices and tariffs but first of all about increasing wages and social standards. One of the possible options to mitigate consequences of the price shock is to increase income of the population by raising minimum wage and minimum pension in two times to bring them in line with the living wage. Trade unions also proposed another option – to raise wages and simultaneously reduce gas price.
Participants in the All-Ukrainian Protest March passed the Resolution.
Main trade union demands include:
► from the Government and Parliament of Ukraine – to reform the wage system; to set from 1 October minimum wage at the level of fairly calculated living wage of UAH 3067 with respective increases in pensions and students’ scholarships;
► from owners and employers – to increase from 1 August workers’ wages at least by 15%, for the account of savings from two-fold reduction in the level of single social contribution;
► from Parliament members – to immediately hear the report of the Government on its price policy and social protection measures; to pass decisions to prevent reduction of living standards of the population.
Later in the day the trade union delegation headed by FPU President Grygoriy Osoviy met with the Prime-Minister and passed him trade union demands and proposals.