Buenos Aires Times

BA teachers begin 3-day strike after wage talks with Vidal gov't fail

Teachers' unions are demanding the provincial government offer an increase in wages that makes up for the real wage loss they suffered during 2018, as annual inflation soared above 45 percent.

Wednesday 6 March, 2019
Roberto Baradel.
Roberto Baradel. Foto:Noticias Argentinas

Teachers in Buenos Aires province began strike activity on Wednesday to protest the Vidal government's failure to meet union demands for higher wages.

Teachers' unions are demanding the provincial government offer an increase in wages that makes up for the real wage loss they suffered during 2018, when annual inflation soared above 45 percent.

In their last meeting, Governor Maria Eugenia Vidal's representatives offered unions a package equal to 2019's total inflation plus a five percent bonus, which they would have access to in 2020. But unions rejected the offer.

The offer "hinders wage growth and does not contemplate the loss of spending power in 2018", the Buenos Aires Teachers Front, composed of multiple unions, said in a statement.

Teachers will walk off the job on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday during "a national measure which even includes (teachers in) provinces which have secured wage deals" with their respective provincial governments, SUTEBA Secretary General Roberto Baradel said.

"I hope the government calls us back to find a solution. Classes will begin on Monday and we will be in a state of alert and mobilisation", he added.

"For the last 3 years, they have denied us a national collective wage bargaining process. Today, most provinces have failed to secure deals", he added.

The provincial government confirmed it would dock participating teachers the three days they skip classes, the Noticias Argentinas agency reported.

Teachers from other jurisdictions, public workers, judicial staff and doctors will march on the Buenos Aires Province House in the Capital on Wednesday to demand the reopening of collective wage barraging across industries in the province.

-TIMES/PERFIL

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