The workers of the El Pino Healthcare Center they ask the Cabildo of Gran Canaria that respects the current working conditions of the workforce, after the municipal corporation has urged the ICOT Health Group – which manages the space since 2010 – to comply with the conditions established in the technical specifications. A petition that arises eight years after the writing of the document, and that would imply a reduction of five hours in the working day of the technicians and the day center assistants. "Two weeks ago the company met us to inform us of this decision, the truth is that the statement states that these professional categories must perform a workday of 35 hours per week, instead of the 40 they have been doing so far," explains Lorena Moreno, president of the works committee of the capital's public center.
As pointed out by Moreno, throughout this period of time, "the Cabildo has been carrying out reviews and inspections in which it has requested the reading of the different contracts, which include the hours that the workers have." To this we must add that ICOT subrogated a group of employees at the time of their arrival at the social health center, and made new hirings with the same hourly calculation. "This has been the case until the last quarter, when the working day in the new contracts has gone to 35 hours per week," emphasizes the president.
In this sense, the works council expresses its confusion, not understanding "why this requirement arises eight years later, when all workers have established wage guarantees". Based on Moreno's testimony, ICOT "it has been months trying to negotiate with the Cabildo the application of this measure, but without getting to obtain result". For this reason, the only solution that shuffles the company is to undertake an Employment Regulation File (ERE) with reduction of the working day. A practice that would affect a total of 47 staff members, including occupational therapists, psychologists, physiotherapists, social workers, and daycare assistants.
Also, as expressed by the president, the validity of the statement will end in December 2019, "so it is already working on a new document, and the company that will be responsible for managing the center from 2020 will be tender." He adds that, "the Cabildo has to be aware of the needs of the space, which is why the sheet has to be adapted to El Pino, and not El Pino al sheet."
But the reduction of the time slot of employees would not only affect the workforce, but all users of a center that works as a residence for patients with Alzheimer's or dementias, mental health disorders, and for people with different degrees of dependence . "Five hours less work would mean, for example, a decrease in the time of physiotherapy sessions that our users receive, and even, will affect the dispensing of drugs by pharmacy staff," says the representative of the committee.
In order to claim their rights as workers, and as a sign of protest, the members of this socio-health center yesterday held a rally, on the occasion of the assistance of the manager of the Institute of Social and Sociosanitaria (IAS), Blanca Méndez, a the inauguration of the nativity scene that the enclosure does every year. "The employees decided to read a poem and a letter to reflect their discomfort and dissatisfaction with the decision of the capital city council," explains the president.
In addition, unions, committee members, and several family representatives requested an "urgent" meeting with Méndez. "We need solutions, if the situation does not change, we believe that the measure will be effective at the beginning of January," says Moreno.