Union accuses Dutch minister of moonwalking

20th August 2011, Comments 0 comments

The FNV federation of unions has accused Social Affairs Minister Henk Kamp of “moonwalking” on the issue of raising the pension age. The federation says it can see the minister moving, but he’s still standing on the same spot.

The criticism comes after Minister Kamp warned the FNV, he would carry on without it if the various unions affiliated to the organisation couldn’t reach agreement among themselves on the issue by 12 September. In Dutch daily , he says he is prepared to consider softening the blow for employees in low paid work who want to stop early. Often people in low paid jobs do heavy labour and start employment at a younger age.

The government proposals make it financially less attractive to stop working before reaching pension age. However, the minister said, “We could give people who are 62, 63 and 64 more money. If they save that money for three years before taking pension, then the transition is easier.”

The Labour Party in particular wants to see concessions in the rules surrounding retirement before reaching pension age for people in low paid jobs. The unions are divided on whether or not to support government proposals to raise the pension age to 66 in 2020.  

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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