The three-day hotel workers’ and bus drivers’ strike scheduled to start at midnight has been called off, RÚV reports. Several unions and the Icelandic Confederation of Enterprise (SA) have signed a declaration of intent which outlines the terms of agreement for workers’ contracts valid until November 1, 2022. Union leaders say it’s now up to the government whether the agreement is finalised – or negotiations return to the drawing board.
Taxes and housing are key factors
“We agreed on a framework for a potential contract,” stated Ragnar Þór Ingólfsson, chairperson of VR Union, “and it entails the government being part of the solution,” adding that negotiators would most likely meet with government representatives this morning. Though the details of the agreement have not been made public, Ragnar Þór says it could be acceptable for unions, the business community, and the government if all goes well.
Ragnar confirms that the government’s contribution concerns taxation and housing issues. Efling chairperson Sólveig Anna Jónsdóttir says her union has emphasised tax cuts for the lowest earners. “I hope the message has come across clearly and that we will receive the news today that that it will be so,” she stated, adding “I hope the government takes on the great responsibility they truly bear now.”
Rush hour strikes ongoing
Although a three-day hotel workers’ and bus drivers’ strike scheduled to start at midnight has been called off, bus drivers’ rush hour strikes took place this morning between 7.00-9.00am. Efling CEO Viðar Þorsteinsson stated that the union would be meeting with representatives of Strætó this morning.