LIMA – Public health employees in Peru launched a nationwide strike Thursday to press the government to comply with the agreements that ended a previous job action, union leader Susana Palacios told Efe.
The strike was called by the Fenutssa labor union, which represents some 95,000 Health Ministry employees, including administrators, nurses and nurses aides, psychologists, biologists and other technical personnel.
Not all Fenutssa members walked off the job on Thursday, Palacios said, explaining that the plan calls for the strike to build gradually.
“We organized it like that to try and not to harm the public, particularly now that we have two health alerts about potential cases of Chikungunya and Ebola,” she said.
The main union demand is a standardization of pay levels that would bring salaries in the rest of the country up to the levels that prevail in Lima.
Fenutssa leaders say Health Minister Midori de Habich pledged a year ago, following an earlier strike, to enact the adjustment, but the process remains unfinished.
Palacios said the wage increases granted so far benefitted only workers with a university diploma, which she called “discriminatory” toward many technical personnel and most of the administrative staff.