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JUHANI ARTTO
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Trade Union News from Finland
At the OL3 nuclear power plant construction site:
Payment of taxes and social security contributions has clearly improved but serious wage and working hour problems prevail


Helsinki (09.10.2012 - Juhani Artto) The Employment and Equality Committee of the Finnish Parliament is organising a public hearing on Wednesday concerning working conditions at the Olkiluoto 3 nuclear power plant construction site. Despite intensive and concerted efforts by the trade unions representing workers at the site serious wage and salary dumping as well as working hour irregularities have prevailed. Also flagrant obstacles to workers joining union organizations remain in place.

Just a few days ago Pro, the magazine of the salaried employees' union Pro, reported once again of these problems. According to the report, the main contractor, the French company Areva, listens to what the union representatives have to say, but after that "nothing happens", says Janne Vainio. He works at the site as the contact person for the Metalworkers' Union.

A much more positive message emerges from OL3 in the latest issue of Työeläke, the magazine of The Finnish Centre for Pensions. Payment of taxes and social security contributions has advanced to the point where "nearly all unclarities" have been ironed out. This is the result of an enormous amount of work that has been put in and due to the close cooperation between the social security and tax authorities and the trade union representatives. The latter are important sources of information from the grassroots level, Työeläke explains.

This cooperation has been so successful that "the model" is now widely applied elsewhere in the construction industry, the magazine rejoices.

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