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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
From El Pais:

Spanish unemployment falls to 2011 levels

According to new figures published by the Spanish national statistics office INE this morning, the unemployment rate in Spain fell to 22.37% in the second quarter of the year – slightly lower than in December 2011, when the centre-right government of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy entered office. The number of employed people increased by 411,800 compared to the previous quarter – marking the highest increase in this specific period of the year since 2005. However, only 60,800 of the newly employed are on permanent contracts.

Note the last sentence....

I also saw a poll in ABC which showed PP on course to be the largest party in the Cortes in November but with PSOE close behind. Podemos predicted vote share has halved but they could form a coalition to put Sanchez in Rajoy's place...
 

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From El Pais:

Spanish unemployment falls to 2011 levels

According to new figures published by the Spanish national statistics office INE this morning, the unemployment rate in Spain fell to 22.37% in the second quarter of the year – slightly lower than in December 2011, when the centre-right government of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy entered office. The number of employed people increased by 411,800 compared to the previous quarter – marking the highest increase in this specific period of the year since 2005. However, only 60,800 of the newly employed are on permanent contracts.

Note the last sentence....

I also saw a poll in ABC which showed PP on course to be the largest party in the Cortes in November but with PSOE close behind. Podemos predicted vote share has halved but they could form a coalition to put Sanchez in Rajoy's place...
The destruction of full time permanent jobs and their replacement (eventually) by part time and/or temporary ones seems to be a feature of "economic recovery" in most countries (including the USA and the UK) as far as I can see. They like it that way, unfortunately for the workers, as it apparently leads to a more flexible (well they call it that but it really means they can like it or lump it) workforce. It's not so good for the workers, though, if it means they can't plan their future, get mortgages, etc. Even long term rental contracts must be more difficult to get if you only have a temporary job.
 

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If you are up-to-date with UK affairs you will know this is a hot topic here just now, as is inequality. Any job is better than no job, but it seems the race to the bottom continues!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
If you are up-to-date with UK affairs you will know this is a hot topic here just now, as is inequality. Any job is better than no job, but it seems the race to the bottom continues!
Yes, I keep up, I'm a member of a UK political party as well as a Spanish one. :) As Lynn says, we're following the UK in that most jobs are of a temporary nature, especially here in Malaga Province where as Lynn again rightly points out, unemployment is still hovering around 30% and most jobs are seasonal with low pay and long hours.
Agreed, any job is better than no job, but what is the point of packing half of our school leavers off to universities if the only jobs waiting for them are Macjobs, I wonder...
Although it keeps the number of unemployed low...
At least in the UK Employment and Equality Laws are more than paper documents, as they are in Spain, sadly. Workers can exercise their rights and have mechanisms to appeal to to have them enforced, especially if they belong to a trades union.
Spain signed up to the Social Chapter (I presume) but has nothing like the UK Equality Act 2010.
 

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If you are up-to-date with UK affairs you will know this is a hot topic here just now, as is inequality. Any job is better than no job, but it seems the race to the bottom continues!
I am wondering what will happen when the changes to working tax credits come into effect. I believe the number of hours people have to work before they qualify for tax credits will be increased, so will all the people affected be able to get more hours, or not?

Mr Osborne might have tried to present his so-called living wage (which falls far short of the actual living wage) as a wonderful thing, but the figures which emerged within a couple of days of his emergency budget regarding how many families would be worse off as a result told a very different story.

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-33463864

It's a lot like here, really, isn't it - things which are trumpeted as good news which upon closer examination are nothing of the kind. That's politicians for you.
 

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Only 2.3% of the UK workforce are on zero hours. There has to be some flexible working especially in tourist areas. Not good but take the CDS. Many places are dead after Sept. Small businesses cannot be expected to carry on employing 3 workers they had in August when one is enough in September, they would just go bankrupt.

Ps. Did you know 60+ Labour MPs employ staff on zero hours
 

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Only 2.3% of the UK workforce are on zero hours. There has to be some flexible working especially in tourist areas. Not good but take the CDS. Many places are dead after Sept. Small businesses cannot be expected to carry on employing 3 workers they had in August when one is enough in September, they would just go bankrupt.

Ps. Did you know 60+ Labour MPs employ staff on zero hours
I don't believe anybody mentioned zero hours, only part time and temporary contracts.

As regards small businesses, I have read a lot of comments from those who run them in the UK saying that they won't be able to pay the new minimum wage without either shedding staff or raising prices. Of course, that could be crying wolf as employers did before Labour originally introduced the national minimum wage (opposed by the Tories), but we will have to see.

The problem of seasonal unemployment in tourist areas just shows that an unbalanced economy which relies too much on the services sector is not a good thing.
 

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Labour is in crisis - that's a whole other thread. My understanding of the child tax credits is that the earnings threshold has been halved - households who earned almost £7k a year used to be entitled to the full amount and for an unlimited number of children. Now it's about £3.5k on a sliding downward scale and for a maximum of 2 children. It's not that they need to work more hours to be eligible, the idea is that employers should fill the earnings gap - in theory by increasing wages (won't happen) in reality people will need to work more hours (if they can, not always available).
 

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But isn't that what many were whinging about, that tax credits and housing benefit were helping employers to keep wages low. Work for 6 quid an hour and get topped up by the Government. Isn't that what the socialists wanted to stop?

Anyway, why are we discussing the UK. I thought it was a thread about Spain's improving employment situation:D
 

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True. LynnR asked about the tax credits. I am merely pointing out the fact that low wages and temp contracts are not a Spain only issue. Oh, and what socialists?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
But isn't that what many were whinging about, that tax credits and housing benefit were helping employers to keep wages low. Work for 6 quid an hour and get topped up by the Government. Isn't that what the socialists wanted to stop?

Anyway, why are we discussing the UK. I thought it was a thread about Spain's improving employment situation:D
Yes, it is, but there are many similarities and parallels between the economic situation in both countries as they have both followed the same neo-liberal model.
The Working Family Tax Credit and Housing Benefit payments are in effect subsidies to employers and landlords. As far as Housing Benefit goes, surely the solution is to build more affordable social housing, and introduce some form of Fair Rent policy.
With Tax Credits, it's more complex. Yes, the core problem is low wages and I fully support a Living Wage. But....having had a partner who owned and ran a medium-sized business it's not feasible for many small businesses to raise wages, for many reasons. In some sectors, competition is fierce and it's not always possible to compete on quality...we could as we could afford to pay to attract more skilled and experienced workers. Many small businesses are one or two man bands.
It's also important to have flexibility in hiring and firing. We had to make a worker redundant when we lost a contract. We paid high wages and our profit margins were too narrow to carry a non-profit-making employee.
I think one way to get round this would be to encourage more companies to allow employees to have a say in management and to be open about the company's accounts. I'm a great advocate of worker participation, as some of you know. A well-run private sector paying fair taxes is what funds the public sector, after all, and employers and employees have a shared interest in keeping the company afloat.
Whatever, solutions will be arrived at only after much detailed debate and as I see it, that just isn't happening.
 

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I saw on canal sexta this evening a woman who had just got a job as an eventual for six months and over the moon. It is a bit like the lottery where they roll balls and 10 out of 140 or so had put their name in. So sad.
As to the UK and it's raising of the minimum wage, what was that all about? Apart from the vindictive IDS chortling away, what was on offer in five year's time should have been for this year.
 

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I saw on canal sexta this evening a woman who had just got a job as an eventual for six months and over the moon. It is a bit like the lottery where they roll balls and 10 out of 140 or so had put their name in. So sad.
As to the UK and it's raising of the minimum wage, what was that all about? Apart from the vindictive IDS chortling away, what was on offer in five year's time should have been for this year.

Loaded question really
Should we be glad they did it. Or
Should we moan they didn't
No answer but I bet we still have to pose the same question in 5 years time
Or will a REAL leader appear
I fear not
Mind you as a reformed Thatcherite CORBYN does appear to be the one with principles.
Politics and Principles in the same sentence??
I think I need to lay down:confused2:
 

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At least in the UK Employment and Equality Laws are more than paper documents, as they are in Spain, sadly. Workers can exercise their rights and have mechanisms to appeal to to have them enforced, especially if they belong to a trades union.
Spain signed up to the Social Chapter (I presume) but has nothing like the UK Equality Act 2010.
Actually, here in Spain, most jobs in private sectors have very fair laws for the workers. Each sector is regulated by a "Convenio colectivo" which is drawn up by reprasentatives of Unions and employers. They stipulate everything: legal days off, holidays, working hours, wages including the number of extra payments, severance pays, sick leave, and so on. The biggest problem is that many small businesses can't afford to adhere to them and, because workers are desperate, they agree to sign contracts that don't reflect the true nature of their situation. However, if you are a member of a Union, which everyone can afford (I pay 8.50€ every quarter) you are entitled to free legal advice. If you have to make a claim against an employer for unfair dismissal, you don't have to pay the legal fees until you get compensation and then you pay a percentage previously agreed. Nor does it drag on for months. The first step (mediación) is within 30 days and the actual works tribunal is between 4 and 6 weeks later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Actually, here in Spain, most jobs in private sectors have very fair laws for the workers. Each sector is regulated by a "Convenio colectivo" which is drawn up by reprasentatives of Unions and employers. They stipulate everything: legal days off, holidays, working hours, wages including the number of extra payments, severance pays, sick leave, and so on. The biggest problem is that many small businesses can't afford to adhere to them and, because workers are desperate, they agree to sign contracts that don't reflect the true nature of their situation. However, if you are a member of a Union, which everyone can afford (I pay 8.50€ every quarter) you are entitled to free legal advice. If you have to make a claim against an employer for unfair dismissal, you don't have to pay the legal fees until you get compensation and then you pay a percentage previously agreed. Nor does it drag on for months. The first step (mediación) is within 30 days and the actual works tribunal is between 4 and 6 weeks later.
Spain like any other EU country has laws relating to fair treatment at work, laws against racism, sexism, homophobia and so on...like all EU member states . But laws are only as good as the mechanisms for enforcing them and this seems to be where Spain falls down, at least that's what I've learnt from talking to Trades Unions.
It was also notour experience when one of our employees at our refuge took us to court for 'unfair dismissal'.....he lost.
We still have ACAS and Employment Tribunals in the UK as well as County Courts which deal with discrimination in the provision of goods and services. These courts and tribunals frequently awárd large sums to employees who win cases.
I know a worker here who,is refused paid holidays. He knows he has rights but also knows he will be sacked if he 'causes trouble' and demands his rights.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Loaded question really
Should we be glad they did it. Or
Should we moan they didn't
No answer but I bet we still have to pose the same question in 5 years time
Or will a REAL leader appear
I fear not
Mind you as a reformed Thatcherite CORBYN does appear to be the one with principles.
Politics and Principles in the same sentence??
I think I need to lay down:confused2:
Why do you assume that only those on the Left have principles, I wonder?
People on the Right of the political spectrum have principles too, even though they may not be ones you agree with. Thatcher had principles.
Corbyn is a career politician like the rest. he has been an MP since the 1980s and has never had a job outside politics.
We've had two 'real Leaders' in the UK in recent times, if you mean by that politicians who,were popular with charisma, Thatcher and Blair.
I could live without more like that. A Leader who is sensible, honest, decent, listens to,people but gives a moral lead and explains reasons for policies would be real enough for me.:)
 

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Spain like any other EU country has laws relating to fair treatment at work, laws against racism, sexism, homophobia and so on...like all EU member states . But laws are only as good as the mechanisms for enforcing them and this seems to be where Spain falls down, at least that's what I've learnt from talking to Trades Unions.
It was also notour experience when one of our employees at our refuge took us to court for 'unfair dismissal'.....he lost.
We still have ACAS and Employment Tribunals in the UK as well as County Courts which deal with discrimination in the provision of goods and services. These courts and tribunals frequently awárd large sums to employees who win cases.
I know a worker here who,is refused paid holidays. He knows he has rights but also knows he will be sacked if he 'causes trouble' and demands his rights.
Yes, this was going to be my question to anles, whether she (hmmm she? I've always thought of anles as female, but maybe not :)) thought that this legislation was actually put into practice. Basic laws like discrimination in job ads are in place, but are broken every day for example and I find that this is where Spain falls down time and time again - enforcing the laws which are in place in all areas of life.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
True. LynnR asked about the tax credits. I am merely pointing out the fact that low wages and temp contracts are not a Spain only issue. Oh, and what socialists?
I am very wary of using the term 'socialist' as it is a self-defining term now largely devoid of meaning.
Strictly speaking, it refers to an economic system characterised by state ownership and control of the 'commanding heights' of the economy. Many people who call themselves socialists are more likely to be left- leaning liberals or social democrats.
In Spain, the term 'socialista' refers to members/suporters of PSOE, a social democrat sister Party of Labour. True leftists are referred to as 'izquierdas'.
I'm a member of PSOE and am mildly amused when I'm called a militante- Party term for an activist. It reminds me of that cartoon character in Viz, Millie
Tant the feminist activist. I haven't been a militant for decades, back to thentime when I was a paid- up very active member of the Communist Party of Great Britain.:)
 
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