More than seven weeks of cultural strike has ended – NRK Kultur og underholdning

LO Stat and Specter have agreed to introduce gender-neutral lifetime pension benefits in the cultural sector from April 1, 2022.

– We had good and fruitful negotiations over the weekend. Negotiations were still on with a solution that both sides accepted by the evening into Monday, said national mediator Mats Wilhelm Ruland.

Ombudsman Mats Ruland made the parties agree.

Photo: NRK

Must be extended Monday

Nearly 900 employees in 15 cultural institutions, between the Opera and the National Theatre, went on strike. A large number of concerts and theatrical performances have been cancelled.

On Monday, strike is to raise our ladder with 200 new strikers. But at 3.30pm Monday evening, the Ombudsman announced that the strike was over.

Controversy over women’s pensions

The record-breaking cultural strike has a background in conflict with retirement in cultural institutions. In 2016, employees agreed to switch from a defined benefit pension to a defined contribution pension.

The union now wants a hybrid pension, while Specter wants to keep the current scheme. Last night, the seven-week knot was loose.

– We have gone through a long and demanding strike and gained support for our main demands. We are delighted that our members are now able to return to work, and the cultural sector is reopening, said Lise Olsen, chief negotiator and deputy head of LO Stat.

Glad to be open again

Anne-Kari Bratten, CEO of Spekter, is pleased that cultural activities can now be reopened.

“Furthermore, I am satisfied that we, with the help of the Ombudsman, have reached an agreement that we, in collaboration with the LO, will find a permanent pension scheme that is good for the company and all employees,” said Bratten.

According to the Ombudsman, the offer from Spekter following mediation on Wednesday 20 October opens the door for a new round of negotiations. LO Stat gave the answer the next day, and based on the offer and answer, the parties were invited to have a new conversation.

LO leader Peggy Hessen Følsvik with strike guards at the National Theatre.

LO leader Peggy Hessen Følsvik with strike guards at the National Theatre.

Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB

Receive further assistance from the Ombudsman

Before February 1, the parties will try to clarify as many unresolved issues as possible in a professional manner that have been raised during this year’s negotiations.

The Ombudsman must appoint a neutral and independent expert. The agreement regarding the permanent employment pension program is included in the activity agreement.

The strike has been going on for a long time and is very demanding on the parties involved, the press release said. Therefore, the parties agreed that as soon as the strike ended, there would be a new meeting between local parties to rebuild good relations.

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