May 1 ‘Day of Worker’ sees thousands join traditional parade through streets of Lisbon
CGTP – the confederation of Portuguese trade unions – marked the traditional May 1 parade through Lisbon today to show the government it has no intention of accepting the salary increases envisaged in the State Budget.
Secretary general Isabel Camarinha accused the government and employers of perpetuating a ‘hoax’ in saying raising salaries now would create a spiral of inflation.
CGTP will be fighting for the national minimum wage to be fixed at €800 by July 1 (it is currently only €705), she said. It also wants pensions to be raised by “a minimum of €20” (not the €10 in the State Budget).
As reports explain, the government has pledged to increase the minimum wage to €900 by the end of the current legislature (ie in just over four years time), but no increases beyond the 0.9% in the State Budget (which is still under discussion) are envisaged – and no discussions on increases are due to come before the autumn.
Ms Camarinha’s stance highlights to obstacles still ahead.
The union leader said the increases CGTP are demanding are justified by the rising cost of the most basic products consumed by families, stressing the situation has worsened dramatically as a result of “the reprehensible war in Ukraine”.
Expresso’s report on the afternoon showed that Ms Camarinha believes that “alongside the pandemic and sanctions, an operation is underway that aims to accentuate exploitation”. The State Budget for 2022 is part of that operation…
Thousands took part in the parade today which was joined by politicians from the ‘radical left’.
Jerónomo de Sousa (PCP) and Catarina Martins (Bloco de Esquerda) added their voices to the call for increased wages, albeit their vetoes last week to the State Budget had no effect.