Tuesday, 13 November 2007

Strikes spreading

A law allowing prevention of access and censorship of Internet sites containing child pornography came into force in Finland at the beginning 2007.

Two weeks ago the Finnish Police gave public notice to their first list to the Internet access operators and now the Internet access providers are to filter access to these sites but this will not prevent accessing these sites, it will only complicate the uploading of the illegal material of the sites here in Finland.

I have been wondering about the health and stress levels of the Valtakunnansovittelija, the national conciliator’s. He is busy with his office swamped with work at the time being and there seems to be some new strike popping up in the media all the time.

First we have the nurse’s of the Finnish health care professionals union, with their threat of mass resignations, one paper pulp mill in Tampere is going to be shut down with the employees walking out today in protest against it. The pharmacies are also going on strike on Thursday in the capital region, and if no agreement is struck it will spread to all the bigger cities around the country. The pharmacies in the Helsinki area are expected to keep open with their supervising staff at least his week.

A strike of telephone operators’ service personnel union is also alerted to begin on Thursday, this meaning that only some mobile phone operators would be up and running in the meanwhile and probably also affecting the Internet providers so the banking business through the net could be shut down. This strike also threatens to spread to all the other phone operators as well given time without an agreement. The engineers began their strike for better pay on Monday morning and the strike is threatening to spread to more employees of more companies in two weeks time if there is no agreement made between the employers and employees union.

Even the president has to cut a trip short and return to Finland in order to ratify the new law forcing the nurse’s to return to their work despite a resignation done due to the disagreement on pay rises. The president has to make a change in her travelling plans and skip her trip to a summit in the US for women leaders of the world. The law has been rushed through the voting in parliament once in the early morning hours today with a second voting about it in the parliament on Thursday for the president to sign it on Friday in order for it to become lawful in time before next Monday when the disputed resignations en masse are effective.

And with the strike of the personnel of Alko, the national alcohol monopoly, beginning on Thursday I was happy to find out that my traditional annual tasting of the fresh Beaujolais Nouveau of more than two decades still is going to stay uninterrupted. The Alko shops will be open on Thursday even with the strike, there will just be a smaller number of shops open due to shortage of staff. The opens stay open with supervising staff only so I will have to make sure which one is open to avoid any unnecessary trips driving around the city.

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