November 21, 2014
Teachers urge the gov't to 'honour' commitments
At the beggining of the 48-hour strike launched by teachers in Buenos Aires and several provinces, the head of SUTEBA teachers’ union, Roberto Baradel, justified the walk-out saying Buenos Aires province teachers earn the “lowest salary in the country’s central region” and referred to other demands concerning schools' infrastructure, health insurance and cafeteria food.
“The strike is to demand the provincial government to honour what was agreed in the beggining of the year,” the union leader said in a press conference today. The teachers were given a salary raise in wage negotiations in April but they claim inflation has surpassed that increase and demand the reopening of collective wage talks.
Baradel said Buenos Aires province teachers earn “at least 1,000 pesos” less in average than their colleagues in Santa Fe, Córdoba and Buenos Aires City. He stressed that the increase in the cost of living has entailed “practically a total loss” of the wage hike agreed with the government.
“The salaries are low already, we cannot allow a loss in purchasing power,” he added.
However, Baradel explained there are other claims that lead to the strike. “There is zero investment in infrastructure,” he said and also referred to demands concerning the schools’ cafeteria meals and the teachers' health insurance.