Gas Distributor on Strike Alert, But Cannot Strike
The gas industry trade union POZ has declared a strike alert over the ongoing redundancies being made in gas distribution company SPP-Distribucia of parent company SPP.
The management of the subsidiary wants to release another one hundred employees, but the trade unionists say the downsizing could even affect the safety of the distribution network as many of those being released are responsible for caring for it. ”This status is absolutely unbearable, because there is a danger that care of gas facilities will worsen” today’s daily Pravda cites chairman of the gas trade union POZ, Peter Kováč.
The trade union is prohibited by law from going on strike, though, so for now public protests are being prepared if the situation does not change. The company argues that those being let go have mostly agreed to it, making use of the various redundancy benefits from the Collective Agreement, according to company spokeswoman Ivana Zelizňáková.
Around 1,500 employees work for SPP – distribúcia at present, almost half of what it was before the company was privatised exactly ten years ago. Last year alone some 400 employees were made redundant, even though the company generated a profit of EUR 112 million in 2011.
”The most serious problem, though, is that instead of us developing the company, we are in this way – by constant slimming down – reaching a state of anorexia. For this reason from today we have declared a strike alert. We are convinced that SPP-distribúcia, a.s., which registered more than EUR 180 million in profit last year, is not dependent on making savings by releasing employees, who in the end could be required” declared POZ chairman Kovac.