In the midst of the demonstrations, the House sent the Senate a 12 percent adjustment to public sector wages


In the midst of the demonstrations by the health workers’ unions and the judiciary who remain mobilized asking to be included in the initiative, the Chamber of Deputies and Deputies approved the project which grants a differentiated readjustment of the salaries of the sector public and which, in addition , grants discounts such as Christmas bonuses, national holidays and winter bonuses for pensioners.

The Chamber supported the law, in general terms, with 106 votes in favour, 10 against and 2 abstentions. It then approved various articles for which a separate vote was requested, with the exception of article 69 which regulated telework in the municipalities, which was rejected with 60 votes in favour, 56 against and 9 abstentions.

In this way, the approved readjustment, from 1 December 2022, will be 12% for workers in the Public Administration whose gross salary is up to 2,200,000 pesos. This will benefit 89% of officials.

For higher income officials, it will be a fixed monthly amount of 264,000 pesos for a full day.

This 12% readjustment will also be extendable to those workers in the public sector who are not affected by any of the wage systems indicated in this regulation. This provided that their gross remuneration does not exceed 2,200,000 pesos. For the upper sections it will be 264 thousand pesos.

Likewise, rehabilitation will be granted to directors, kindergarten educators and educational assistants working in establishments financed by the National Council of Nurseries. Likewise for public education assistants governed by law 21.109, which establishes a statute for such officials.

Within the financial autonomy of the state universities, they will be able to readjust the salaries of their officials, taking this readjustment as a reference.

According to the Government, the readjustment will not apply to the President of the Republic, senators, deputies, ministers and other authorities envisaged by article 38 bis of the political Constitution. This provision regulated the determination of the income of these entities and established a specific procedure for this purpose.

Christmas bonuses

The project, which will now be examined by the Senate, also grants Christmas bonuses to public workers. This will amount to $63,062 for those whose net earnings for the month of November 2022 are 943,703 pesos or less. In turn, it will be $33,358 for those whose remuneration exceeds this amount and up to 3,125,052 pesos.

In the case of the 2023 National Holiday Bonus, it will be $81,196 and $56,365, respectively, depending on the caps mentioned above.

The aforementioned benefits for the passive sector – pensioners – will correspond to:

  • Christmas bonus of $26,743, up $15,104 for each load of child or maternity benefits.
  • National Holiday Christmas bonus of $23,261 and will increase $11,933 per load.

Finally, a winter bonus is granted in May for pensioners who have reached the age of 65. This benefit will total $74,767.

Other benefits

The project also regulates or grants concessions in terms of school vouchers, holidays and contributions to welfare services. Likewise, special assignments are established for the professional institution of the Legal Medical Service and the assignments for the performance of school assistants are regulated.

The 12% adjustment will also apply to the scholarship unit and will apply to salaries and allowances the value of which is readjusted or linked to said unit.

Meanwhile, the bonuses of the extreme areas are being paid and the duration of the redundancy incentive and the severance indemnity is extended.

In addition, this varied law also addresses time control regulations, in relation to teleworking; recruitment of personnel in local educational services and measures on absenteeism and early school leaving.

Finally, among other things, the transfer of paid personnel in the municipal sector is regulated.

manifestations

During the elaboration of the project in the lower house, there were demonstrations, both outside La Moneda and in Congress, by public health unions and the Judiciary, who expressed their unease with what they called “discrimination”, since they will not receive the 12% readjustment.

Doctors, dentists, judicial officials and prosecutors have asked the Executive not to be sidelined by the salary adjustment, as —despite their high incomes—it will not be a good sign considering that health and justice have been declared priorities by the president’s government Gabriel Borico.

“Those that exceed 2 million and 200 thousand but are not readjusted by 12% and which includes a very high percentage of doctors and doctors, and according to what we have discussed with other unions, it would concern about 40% of professionals who are not doctors. and who work in the sector”, accused the president of the Medical College, Patricio Meza, according Radio University of Chile.

The union leader said that in a country where health and justice are priorities, “this readjustment excludes us and squanders the possibility of achieving the objectives in these areas in the coming years”. And he added: “We are not asking for our salaries to be increased, only that in practice we are not continuing to lower our salaries because the increases have been well below the CPI”.

For his part, Francisco Bravo, president of the National Association of Public Prosecutors, said, according to the radio station, that “neither prosecutors, nor judges, public defenders, professionals, doctors or dentists who they work in the public sector, we have come to this sector to get rich, on the contrary, we have come to the public sector for the vocation of service and to serve the country from our different areas and what we have received from the government, especially from the Ministry of Finance, is a signal in the opposite direction”.

Bravo added that “it seems incoherent, incongruous to us that the government treats us as a sort of privileged caste and that it stigmatises us in this sense and tells us today that the priority is health, safety, and it tells us precisely who works in those areas that don’t interest us”:

It is worth mentioning that, from the government, the undersecretary of finances, Claudia Sanhueza, remarked that “this will come to everyone, the problem is that it has a design which is a complete readjustment of 12% up to a certain gross income and decreases seen that the rent will go up.”

Along the same lines, the Minister of Labour, Jeannette Jara, specified that “89% of workers receive an adjustment of 12% and 11% receive an adjustment of 264,000 dollars”.

“As regards the Public Prosecutor, in the parliamentary discussion, it was established that working groups will be set up in May 2023 to deal with the issues that have been raised. In this way, a bill will be presented in September to take charge of various matters that have been manifested”, explained the head of Labour.

Francisco Bravo contradicted this position and called on the President of the Republic “to intervene directly to remedy this totally unjust situation and that all public sector workers, without any discrimination, have the same 12% readjustment as has been announced”.

Also present at this Wednesday’s demonstration were Patricio Aguilar, president of the National Association of Judicial Administration Professionals (APRAJUD), Gabriela Farías, vice president of Fenpruss, and Francisca Crispi, president of the Medical Association of Santiago, and the president of the College of dentists, Mariluz Lozano, who made the following statement in a press outlet outside La Moneda.

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