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Protests to be held in all districts as part of CoLA strike

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The three-hour strike over the cost-of-living allowance (CoLA) taking place next Thursday will be held between noon and 3pm, the participating unions said on Friday.

The nationwide strike seeks the full restoration of CoLA following an impasse after discussions between Labour Minister Kyriacos Koushos, unions and employers’ organisations.

Friday’s announcement detailed that protests will take place across all districts at 1pm.

The Nicosia demonstration will be held near the finance ministry and head towards the deputy labour and social welfare ministry, while Limassol’s will be held at the district administration office – as will the demonstrations in Paphos and Larnaca. Paralimni’s will be held at the district’s labour and social welfare office.

Public and private employees will participate in the strike. Among the unions participating are Peo, Sek, Pasydy, Deok, Oelmek, Poed, Oltek, SAK, Pasyki, and others.

About 25 to 30 per cent of private sector workers are party to collective agreements and eligible to CoLA adjustments.

Workers are demanding the gradual full restoration of CoLA while employers said they want to continue to pay 50 per cent of CoLA as had been the practice in the past five years.

The cost-of-living allowance, implemented since 1944, was suspended after the 2013 crisis and partially reinstated in 2018. Trade unions and employers’ organisations had entered discussions following the expiration of a deal struck in July 2017 that provided for employers to pay 50 per cent of CoLA.

 

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