The employers’ association of El Corte Inglés, Ikea and Leroy Merlin proposes to freeze the salary of 230,000 employees

Jorge Aguilar

Madrid

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The bosses of large companies, Anged, and the unions Fetico, Fasga, CC.OO. and UGT have formed the negotiating table for the department store agreement. In the first meeting, the employers’ association of companies such as Leroy Merlin, El Corte Inglés, Ikea, Carrefour and Fnac has proposed freeze wages for 230,000 workers that integrates the sector until business results improve and increase the number of holidays and Sundays to work. A proposal that has been rejected by the unions.

The health crisis is hitting the commerce sector hard, which is already celebrating a year of great restrictions. Thus, the minority trade index has fallen by 8.6%, the influx of customers has plummeted by 40% and sales by 17.6% compared to January 2020. Given these data, and the challenges facing the sector ahead, Anged has proposed to freeze the salary of employees and increase Sundays and holidays to work up to 23 both open and closed doors to adapt to online commerce for the next four dates, the time when the agreement would be in force.

The unions have categorically rejected this first proposal. Thus, from Fetico, the general secretary, Antonio Pérez, has explained that “any measure must be temporary and not structural, in addition the wage freeze is inadmissible for this union.”

For its part, from CC.OO. They have stressed that «the employer’s association is going to have us in front of it if it intends to use the digital transition to worsen the conditions of the workforce by increasingly limiting their possibility of reconciling their personal and family life with their work life or by freezing their already reduced salary ».

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From Fasga they have indicated that “we must all promote a system that allow the survival of companies and, consequently, guarantee employment ”. However, he emphasizes that this should “result in quality employment.” For this reason, it proposes that the agreement last two years, increases the fixed salary in a sustainable way and increases the variable salary based on the productivity of the sector. In addition, they ask that the number of Sundays and holidays not be increased.

Despite this union rejection, Anged sources have stressed to this newspaper that there is still a long way to go in the negotiation and that they hope that over the next few weeks they can continue to advance. Furthermore, they explain that the trade situation means that Anged “cannot raise a increased cost of fixed costs, but it is committed to increasing wages if the results of companies improve.

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