UBI Group, agreement is reached. Six hundred and fifty people to retire.
The agreement came after 58 days of negotiations. The selection will be on a voluntary basis; in Varese Province, about 150 bank workers, out of a total of 1100, will be affected. Two hundred and forty new permanent contracts planned.
After almost two months of negotiations, an employment agreement has been reached between the UBI Bank Group and trade unions: 650 employees, selected on a voluntary basis, will be retired.
In Varese Province, about 150 bank employees, out of a total of 1100, will be affected. These job losses will be offset partially by 240 young people (15 in Varese Province) receiving permanent contracts, selected, in part, from among the temporary employees already working in the group. As for the fate of the 700 detached UBISS (UBI Services and Systems) employees (60 in Varese Province), the agreement stipulates that all will be reabsorbed into UBI by the end of 2014. At the moment, some will remain detached, but still in the same job, and without any change in their duties. “The negotiations were very difficult,” explained Rosalina Di Spirito, the Provincial Secretary of FABI, “but we’re satisfied, because we’ve halved the structural costs (the Group had planned cuts of €115 million, which meant 1578 jobs lost, ed.) and found some interesting solutions for the detached workers, because they had all asked to return to the head office, to UBI, after being frightened by the prospect of having to choose, by December 31, whether to stay over here or over there, with the danger of having to change their place of work.” The 650 workers that will be leaving, will choose to do so voluntarily. It is mostly those employees who would have retired in the next 5 years and, according to the trade union, there should be no shortage of requests. In the agreement, checks are planned, already in January, to confirm the voluntary nature of the decision. Furthermore, there should not be any problem of people left jobless and pensionless, as a result of the new social security regulations. The trade unionist continued. “The agreement includes a guarantee formula, because, in the event of changes to the law, the company will be willing to review the agreement.” The encouraged reduction in working hours will also be on a voluntary basis, up to a maximum of 220,000 working days in the three-year period 2013-2015, with the use of the ordinary part of the solidarity fund, which provides for a 60% salary for the reduction period.
The agreement includes the closure of two branches and “a tight control over management costs, to mark the beginning of an equal approach”, that is, less money to the managers. There is still one shadow in this negotiations. In the final stages of the agreement, FISAC-CGIL left the negotiations, thereby breaking the unity with the other trade unions (FABI, Dircredito, FIBA-CISL, SINFUB, UGL, UILCA). “It was a surprise,” Di Spirito concludes. “After two months of hard negotiations, spent side by side, and after overcoming difficult times, finding the necessary strength to maintain unity at the table, they suddenly left. I think there were external problems.”