After several marathon days and after exceeding the legal deadline by 42 hours, the 11 unions present at CaixaBank have signed an agreement with the management to carry out the largest ERE in Spanish banking. The bank agrees to reduce layoffs to 6,452 contract terminations, which is 1,839 less than initially planned. This represents a decrease of 22.2% of the total, although the objective of the unions was to reduce the figure to 6,300.
The unions say that the other great stumbling block has disappeared: that the dismissals were forced at CaixaBank. “Voluntariness will be maintained at the exit, which avoids traumatic measures,” they point out in the UGT. Geographic mobility, another tricky issue in the talks, “will be residual, with a guarantee protocol like the one already applied in the 2019 ERE, with very good results,” indicates the union.
The unions also assure that they have achieved “good economic conditions for the staff that leave the company”, as well as the “safeguarding of the rural network with a guarantee of providing service to said population avoiding financial exclusion.” Finally, they point out that “the social security plan for the entire group of employees” has been improved.
Two months of negotiation and two strikes
Reaching this agreement took almost two months of negotiations and two strikes in a week, the first in the entity’s 117-year history, which managed to paralyze most of CaixaBank’s offices, according to the unions.
The government, which controls 16% of the bank, conditioned its support for the ERE on having an agreement with the workers’ representatives, which has given the unions much more strength in the negotiation. The fact that the 11 unions joined in the entire negotiation has also given them more bargaining power, but has made it difficult to move forward.