Thousands rally for fair teacher wages and workload

Around 3,000 people gathered at the Saeima building June 16 in a protest held by the Latvian Education and Science Workers Union (LIZDA), LETA reported.

Attendees ring bells and chant slogans like "Fair load" and "Deputy salaries".

Dozens of notes with announcements of vacancies in schools have been placed around the site, and protesters hold posters demanding a balanced workload, a system for increasing wages in accordance with the principles set out in the Education Law, and a fair mechanism for allocating funding.

LIZDA President Inga Vanaga has stressed that the education system in the country is about to collapse, and it may soon result in there being nobody to teach. The quality and accessibility of education will be significantly affected.

In addition, LIZDA urges higher education representatives to take part in the protest with the Saeima.

The trade union stresses that, alongside the demands of teachers, the Saeima and the government of the LIZDA also raise issues at higher education institutions for the development and approval of the minimum wage schedule, increasing state funding for higher education and science, as well as for balanced workloads.

According to LIZDA, in order to reach the average level of the countries of the European Union, it would be necessary to invest EUR 82 million in higher education so that public spending on Latvia's higher education would reach 0.82% of gross domestic product.

. According to the trade union, the actual remuneration in state universities is unequal and discriminatory: in some state universities, professors and associate professors, have received monthly net wages below €1,000 in 2021, while lecturers received below €500, “which is not even in line with the lower monthly salary rate”.

 

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