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Private daycare centre workers' strike starts on Wednesday

The labour dispute, chiefly concerning salary issues, will also prompt workers at privately-run elderly care facilities to join the strike.

Plastic toy cars in an otherwise empty daycare centre yard.
The labour action is expected to last for just under a week. Image: Rami Moilanen / Yle
Yle News

A labour dispute in the private social services sector has prompted a strike of child care workers from around 200 privately-run daycare centres and 20 private child protection facilities across Uusimaa and Southwest Finland, which will begin on Wednesday.

More than 10,000 children will be affected by the strike. Additionally, workers at elderly care units in Uusimaa and Southwestern Finland are expected to drop tools the following day.

Additionally, more than 1,000 kids at private child protection units and seniors at elderly care facilities will also be affected.

The strike was called to go ahead after negotiations on the private social service sector's collective bargaining agreements failed to reach agreement.

The labour action is expected to last for just under a week.

"We will do everything we can to ensure customer safety during the strike," said Tuomas Mänttäri, the labour market director at the Finnish Association of Private Care Providers, which is representing employers in dispute.

The collective bargaining agreement in the private social services sector expired at the end of April and negotiations about the new agreement started in February.

The employees in the dispute are being represented by a number of unions, including Super, Tehy, Erto, JHL, Talentia, Jyty and Pro.

"The big issue is that the pay gap in the public sector is growing. The parties understand the seriousness of the situation, but the salary gap is too large," said Super's Jukka Parkkola.

Talks are scheduled to resume next Monday, 5 June, under the guidance of the national conciliator's office.

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