Public sector strike
The strike began during the night shift last night. Sebastiáo Santana speaks to reporters with Mário Nogueira, from Fenrprof, in the background

Public sector strike sees high turnout, disruption of services

Frente Comum calls for “immediate wage increases”, capping of food prices

Participation in today’s national strike by public sector workers has so far been high, with many schools closed and hospitals operating with minimum services only, says the union behind it, Frente Comum (Common Front).

Union coordinator Sebastião Santana told reporters shortly early this morning: “At this hour there is still not much concrete data, but the information we have is that hospitals are complying with minimum services, namely in hospital admissions and emergency rooms (…) Some schools are closed and a Citizen’s Bureau in Porto is closed.”

The turnout “shows the discontent of the workers with the whole labour situation” in the country, he said.

The national strike, which started at midnight on Thursday, began during the night shift for workers in healthcare and domestic waste collection, who were the first to take action.

Among reasons cited by Frente Comum in calling this strike are a demand for immediate wage increases, the capping of the prices for basic goods and services, the upgrading of careers, and the strengthening of public services.

In the education sector, National Teachers Federation Fenprof announced that teachers and other education staff would be taking part in the strike, while non-teaching staff are already covered by the strike notice.

Saturday will see another mass demonstration in Lisbon, this time called by the CGTP, the main union federation in Portugal, pressing for a general increase in wages and pensions in the face of the rising cost of living.

Source: Lusa