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Teachers Threaten Strike Over Salaries

July 9, 2004

DEMANDING raises to meet the rateof inflation, high school teachers are planninga work stoppage after they get backfrom mid-term vacation later this month,the Association of Secondary EducationTeachers (APSE) announced.The government has proposed a 3.5%salary raise for the public sector.However, this does not does not respondto the needs of the working class, accordingto APSE president Danilo Rojas.The organization is demanding thatthe public-sector salary increase at leastenough to meet inflation for last semester(6.26%) and expected inflation in the nextsix months, estimated by the governmentto exceed 10%, according to APSE.The exact date of the work stoppage hasnot been set and could depend on the participationof other unions, La Nación reported.National Association of Educators(ANDE) president Eduardo Rojas saidthey will not join the movement, becausethey belong to the United Syndicate andMagisterial Coordination (CUSIMA) andwill fight with it, not with APSE.Education Workers Syndicate (SEC)representative Gilberth Díaz said the organizationmust first consult with membersbefore committing to strike.Last week, approximately 280 workersfrom various parts of Costa Rica’spublic sector gathered in front of theFinance Ministry to demand a mid-termsalary increase of more than 3.5%.Last month, the Labor Ministry’sNational Salary Council approved a6.27% increase in private-sector salariesfor the second half of the year (TT DailyPage, June 16).

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