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Government, private-sector unions negotiate wage hikes for second half of 2015

June 1, 2015

Union leaders on Monday will request a 2 percent increase in private-sector wages for the second half of this year, at a 4 p.m. session of the Labor Ministry’s National Wages Council.

“Details justifying the amount will be made public at the time of the hearing,” the National Association of Public and Private Employees (ANEP) said in a statement.

The proposal is supported by other unions including the Rerum Novarum Confederation of Workers, the Central Movement of Costa Rican Workers, the United Confederation of Workers (CUT) and the Patria Justa Collective.

Union leaders also will seek an amendment to labor laws so that salary hikes are calculated according to changes in the cost of living, instead of twice a year as currently calculated, and that the increases apply to all workers.

“We urgently need legislation so that all wage adjustments, even if it’s a meager and inadequate figure, be fully respected by all employers. We know of many cases where a worker is informed that she or he will not receive a salary adjustment because the salary is, for example, ₡1,000 [$2] more than the minimum wage. This kind of manipulation should be eliminated,” ANEP’s statement said.

Employers will submit their proposal to the Wages Council on Tuesday, while government officials will do so next Monday.

Representatives from the three sectors then will meet to vote on a final figure, which will take effect on July 1.

The National Wages Council last year approved a 2.01 percent increase in minimum wages for private-sector workers during the first half of this year.

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