All affiliated unions of the Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions (SAK) joined together to ask the organisation’s president Lauri Lyly to stay in the post for another five-year term after the SAK Congress next summer.
The request for Lyly to continue was made at a meeting of the SAK General Council on Thursday.
The initiative for a second term came from the SAK’s three largest unions, the Trade Union for the Public and Welfare Sectors (JHL), the Service Union United (PAM), and the Metalworkers’ Union.
Lyly said that the massive support came as a surprise to him. “It showed wonderful cooperation among different sectors.”
Looking ahead, Lyly lamented what he sees as a lack of trust that prevails between the SAK and the Confederation of Finnish Industry (EK). In his words, EK is deliberately eroding the labour market system, but he warned the SAK not to allow itself to be provoked.
“We need to strive to be at important tables as an interest group, and to stay there. The national government does not negotiate with consultants.”
Lyly said that wage earners need to join forces in putting forward wage demands, and in establishing coordinated pressure.
“The SAK is not sufficiently unified as a movement”, warned deputy chairman Matti Huutola. He said that individual unions have gone into labour negotiations on their own without a unified policy.