The Midwives’ Association in Iceland canceled the upcoming strike, which was scheduled to begin at midnight, after the state negotiator, Ásmundur Stefánsson, proposed a compromise in their struggle with the state for better wages last night.
According to Fréttabladid, Stefánsson had met with Minister of Finance Árni M. Mathiesen to discuss the matter earlier in the day. They came to a conclusion on a proposal of compromise which Stefánsson presented to the representatives of the Midwives’ Association last night.
The details of this compromise will not be revealed until midwives have voted on it, but Fréttabladid’s sources claim that it involves up to a 21 percent increase in salaries for midwives. They had demanded a 25 percent increase.
Chairman of the Midwives’ Association Gudlaug Einarsdóttir would not comment on the proposal other than saying, “It is not at all what we had demanded and we will not accomplish closing the gap in salaries between us and comparable professions. But we are prepared to discuss this proposal and see whether midwives accept it or reject it.”
Stefánsson said the proposal had been a measure of last resort. “I realize that discussions had come to a complete standstill.”
Midwives can begin voting for or against the proposal electronically at noon today. Voting closes on Friday.
It was agreed that if midwives accept the proposal, Finance Minister Mathiesen will drop his charge against them for illegal resignations.
Click here to read more about the strike that was canceled.