A Strike at the National Land Service

A strike has started at the National Land Service under the Ministry of Environment (NLS) from June 1st. The initiator of the strike is the professional union of the NLS.

The decision to defend the legitimate interests of NLS employees through a strike was made at an extraordinary general meeting of the NLS employees’ union on May 23rd.

In the letter to the Ministry of Environment, the strike initiators state that there are violations of labor rights and psychological violence within the NLS. Improper planning and organization of NLS activities create confusion, tension, and health problems, fostering an atmosphere of general fear.

Strike demands are the following:

  1. Voluntary resignation of the temporary NLS director.
  2. Allocate sufficient funding to ensure employees’ right to proper wages, as defined in the civil service law and labor code.
  3. Restore the “frozen” 5% salary package and ensure that these funds are not used for severance payments.
  4. Familiarize NLS employees with the planned new structure of the NLS.
  5. Limit the number of meetings to a maximum of two per day.
  6. Avoid assigning tasks after work, during lunch breaks, weekends, and holidays.
  7. Initiate negotiations for a collective agreement at the employer level.
  8. Allow all NLS employees working in Vilnius to work remotely during the NATO summit.
  9. If these demands are not met by July 1st, 2023, procedures for organizing a warning strike will be initiated.

“The strike at the National Land Service will take place in three stages. In the first stage, starting from June 1st, the easiest and mildest form of strike called ‘work to rule’ or ‘Italian strike’ will be implemented,” says Audrius Gelžinis, the chairman of the NLS trade union.

An Italian strike refers to a work organization where employees do not perform more than required by the contract or work rules. They strictly adhere to working hours, do not work overtime, and do not perform tasks or requirements that are not typical for them. If additional hours or tasks need to be performed, a written, specific, and justified order from the employer is required, along with detailed instructions.

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