Cyprus: Strike to preserve the right to defend teachers and students


Today, on 13 July 2018, OELMEK, POED and OLTEK, ETUCE member organisations in Cyprus, are going on strike to defend their right to be consulted.

On 2 July 2018 the Cypriot government gave the unions an ultimatum to accept the below proposals which are to come into effect on 1 September 2018 without consulting the latter:

increase teaching time of education personnel at all levels by 40 periods in Cyprus;partially and/or completely eliminate special programmes aiming at supporting  disadvantaged students, students with foreign citizenship and from a migrant background; remove the exemption from teaching for trade union duties and activities.

The education trade unions explained that, among other things, the elimination of special programmes potentially affects 35% of the total student population and jeopardizes the right and access to quality education for all in Cyprus.

Echoing the concerns of the Cypriot member organisations against the unilateral decisions of the government, Susan Flocken, ETUCE European Director underlined ,“Striving for and supporting free quality public education for all as an essential element and driver of society governments should in continuous consultations with education trade unions discuss reforms and changes. It is the workers’ right to be informed and consulted in good time on all issues relevant to them”.

In conclusion she wished the unions success and called on the Cypriot government to start negotiations.

ETUCE continuous monitoring the situation.