Case Studies of Good Practice for the Prevention of Racial Discrimination and Xenophobia and the Promotion of Equal Treatment in the Workplace: Austria
04 May 2006
In 1994 the Foundation launched a project Preventing Racism at the Workplace. For this project, national researchers within each EU Member State plus Norway, produced a report covering case studies of good practice within their own country. Most of the case studies concern policies which operate at the level of an individual company or organisation. However, sometimes activities take place at a sectoral, regional or national level, perhaps as a result of agreements between trade unions and employer's organisations. These include collective agreements, joint declarations, and information, training and education campaigns. Good examples of action at this level are therefore also included as case studies.
27 September 1999
From 10 to 17 September 1999, the Austrian Trade Union Federation (Österreichischer Gewerkschaftsbund, ÖGB) organised a week of action to underline its demand for a harmonisation of the legal position of wage earners and salary earners (AT9906153N ). Legal distinctions between the two categories persist in areas such as compensation during sick leave and regulations governing dismissal. About 200 events were scheduled in the week of action. The opening event took place in a square in Vienna and included speeches and a pantomime. It was preceded by 6,000 faxes sent to the Austrian Chamber of the Economy (Wirtschaftskammer Österreich, WKÖ), asking it to give up its resistance to harmonisation. In other areas, information hand-outs and homing pigeons were used in the actions. The public spaces around provincial WKÖ headquarters were targeted for activities while others took place in companies, without disrupting production.  www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/wage-and-salary-earners-remain-unequal
27 September 1999
In an unusual move, the first collective agreement of the 1999-2000 bargaining round covers about 50,000 salaried employees in crafts and trades, excluding metalworking and the construction and timber sectors. From 1 January 2000, their minimum salaries will, on average, rise by 1.6%. The lowest full-time annual gross salary will then be ATS 161,980. Actual salaries may rise by less, since their increase is not specified in the agreement. The deal was concluded between the Union of Salaried Employees (Gewerkschaft der Privatangestellten, GPA) and 30 trades associations of the Austrian Chamber of the Economy (Wirtschaftskammer Österreich, WKÖ).
27 August 1999
In late June 1999, opening hours in Austria's retail sector emerged anew as a hotly debated issue. Most contributions to the debate focused on weekly opening hours the Sunday closing of shops.
27 August 1999
The 1998 strike statistics, published in summer 1999 by the Austrian Trade Union Federation (Österreichischer Gewerkschaftsbund, ÖGB), shows the year to have been free of strikes, including unauthorised strikes. After 1994 and 1996, this was the third year in the 1990s without strike activity, while in 1995 the figure was near nil (AT9707124N ). In 1997, there were 153,000 hours, or 1,913 days, of strike action in the public service when internal revenue and customs staff struck twice in June, involving about 25,800 participants (AT9706117F )- there were thus about 0.3 minutes of strike action per Austrian employee.  www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/another-year-without-strikes  www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/undefined-working-conditions/civil-service-strikes
27 July 1999
Early summer 1999 had seen a number of disputes breaking out in the transport sector, with commentators believing that Austria potentially faced a summer of disruption on the roads and in the air (AT9906150F ). This had failed to materialise by late July.  www.eurofound.europa.eu/ef/observatories/eurwork/articles/undefined-working-conditions/austria-faces-summer-of-transport-disputes
27 July 1999
Magna International, one of the world's major automotive components manufacturers, based in Canada, and founded and owned by a 1950s Austrian emigrant, in 1998 acquired the Austrian Steyr-Daimler-Puch AG (SDP) for about ATS 4 billion. At the same time, Magna continued to expand its own Austrian operations. It has, by its own reckoning, so far invested ATS 11 billion in Austria and created 1,300 jobs while cutting 100 jobs in one of the SDP plants. While engineering jobs are carried out for a wide variety of customers, much of the manufacturing output is destined for Daimler-Chrysler. Recently, major orders were also received from BMW's Rover subsidiary, from Opel and Saab ( the two General Motors subsidiaries), and from Volkswagen. The latter order is expected to create another 300 jobs. Magna, however, is threatening to divert the investment to Hungary or Germany because it feels that its welcome in Austria has soured and its treatment has become unfair.
27 July 1999
At the end of 1998, membership of the Austrian Trade Union Federation (Österreichischer Gewerkschaftsbund, ÖGB) stood at 1,480,016, or 17,568 less than at the end of 1997. This is a reduction of 1.2%. The number of women members decreased by 0.7% to 471,091, while the number of men fell by 1.4% to 1,008,925. The share of women among ÖGB members thus climbed to 31.8%, the highest since 1945. The number of young people (below the age of 22) and apprentices increased by 4.2% to 51,972, after having fallen below 50,000 in 1997. The number of (white-collar) salary earners in membership dropped by 1.0%, compared with 4.2% in 1997. In the public sector (including the railways and posts/telecommunications) membership declined by 2,228 or 0.4% to 588,269 while the number of (blue-collar) wage earners in the private sector declined by 12,038 or 2.0% to 577,501 following a loss of 2.9% in 1997.
27 June 1999
The 13th women's congress of the Austrian Trade Union Federation (Österreichischer Gewerkschaftsbund, ÖGB) was held on 8-10 June 1999. A whole series of demands were raised and formally passed by the delegates, with equal opportunities for women at the centre of concerns. The demands include the following.
27 June 1999
A collective agreement to cover wage earners employed by temporary work agencies whilst not actually hired out to user companies became an important demand of the Austrian Trade Union Federation (Österreichischer Gewerkschaftsbund, ÖGB) during the 1990s. At the beginning of July 1998, there were 20,772 agency workers hired out by 742 agencies to 6,408 employers. While this number was very small it had risen from 8,000 since the summer of 1989. The salary earners amongst the agency workers - 18% of the total - are covered by a collective agreement, but the wage earners are not. The main issue is the wage whilst not actually hired out, and a somewhat lesser issue is the specification of wage entitlements once working for an employer.