The EFBWW strongly condemns the decision of the Finnish Forest Industries Federation (FFIF) to stop collective bargaining and social dialogue in the wood and forestry industries.
This decision will have an enormous negative impact on the country’s labour market and leave about 10,000 workers unprotected! This is a major step backwards for workers’ rights.
The Finnish Industrial Union (Teollisuusliitto) says that “the unilateral exit announcement from FFIF came as a surprise, although there have been signs of this for some time”. The president of the Industrial Union, Riku Aalto, states that “it is really unfortunate that FFIF is embarking on a path that is eroding the Finnish labour market system. This well-functioning system has brought and brings a lot of stability and predictability to our labour market”. The Industrial Union believes that FFIF’s decision will give the union a good opportunity to improve the union density in the sector's workplaces.
The EFBWW stands firmly by its affiliate. EFBWW general secretary, Tom Deleu : “this decision is unacceptable. It is not what is expected from a country like Finland that usually is on the forefront of social progress”.
The decision is also very difficult to understand at a moment when the management of the COVID-19 crisis has clearly demonstrated that autonomous sectoral industrial relations are a powerful, effective and efficient tool to manage crises and to achieve social progress and tackle specific needs and challenges. The decision is all the more shocking as it comes just days before the World Day for Decent Work.
NO MORE BUSINESS AS USUAL – As a response to the COVID-19 crisis the EFBWW put forward 26 concrete demands, including the need for more political, financial and logistic support to reinforce sectoral social dialogue and collective bargaining. The EFBWW also demands a European framework to protect and facilitate sectoral collective bargaining and fundamental collective rights of trade unions.
Read the full statement here.