Histadrut chair threatens general labor dispute

Eini demands reduction in subcontractors in public sector, says they must be moved to direct employment under individual, collective agreements.

histadrut protest (photo credit: Ben Hartman)
histadrut protest
(photo credit: Ben Hartman)
The Histadrut Labor Federation on Tuesday threatened to declare a general labor dispute next Tuesday, demanding that as many subcontractors as possible be moved to direct employment under individual or collective agreements.
“This is a most important struggle, maybe of historic proportions, on the path to achieving real social justice,” Histadrut chairman Ofer Eini said. “This trend toward subcontracting has become more and more common over the last few years, and it must be curtailed.
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“There are many places, mainly in the public sector, in which workers are employed on a contractual basis – not because of economic reasons, but rather because it makes it easier to prevent them from gaining their basic rights.”
Following publication of the Trajtenberg Report on socioeconomic change, the Histadrut criticized its legitimization of continued public-sector subcontracting.
An anticipated cabinet vote on the Trajtenberg Report was postponed until next week after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu failing to gain the backing of government ministers on Monday.
Federation of Israeli Chambers of Commerce president Uriel Lynn accused Eini of seeking a new opportunity to enter center stage because of his “deep personal frustration” at feeling left out of the summer-long protests for social justice.
“There are no problems with subcontractors today,” Lynn said in a press release. “The law was arranged to enable their employment for periods of up to nine months. Subcontractors are mainly workers such as students who are interested in temporary employment. The Histadrut itself signed a general collective agreement that deals with the work rights of subcontractors.”
Jerusalem Post staff contributed to this report.

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