Part-time firefighters in Sweden have won big gains in pay and allowances. The Kommunal municipal workers' union has secured a collective agreement that recognises the importance of this group of workers and the massive challenges they have faced recently as a result of widespread forest fires.
The deal brings a 30% increase for those working additional shifts, equivalent to SEK 1,475 (€137) a week. There is also higher pay for those on call during summer months and for longer shifts, and 5% more on the extra payment for the first hour of work.
“Our negotiating position was exceptionally good,” explained Lenita Granlund of Kommunal. “When the forests were burning, it was obvious to employers how enormously important the part-time firefighters are in ensuring Sweden has a functioning rescue service. This has meant that we now get a collective agreement with compensation far beyond the so-called norm.”