Trade Unions Ready for Pension Reform Referendum Campaign

By 16 April 2019

ZAGREB, April 16, 2019 - Preparations for a signature gathering campaign by the referendum initiative "67 is too much" are nearing completion and everything will be ready for the launch of the campaign on April 27, leaders of three trade union federations which are organising the campaign told a press conference in Zagreb on Tuesday.

The unions called on the public to support their petition to reinstate the retirement age of 65, reduce penalties for early retirement, prevent the possibility of increasing the qualifying age for an old-age pension to 61, and extend the transition period for equalising the retirement conditions for women and men.

Only one percent of workers take an early retirement of their own free will, 20 percent retire early because of ill health, while most are "disposed of" by their employers because they are too old, said Krešimir Sever, the leader of the Croatian Independent Trade Unions (NHS).

The head of the Federation of Autonomous Trade Unions of Croatia (SSSH), Mladen Novosel, said he was confident they would manage to gather the necessary 380,000 signatures or "possibly even twice as many".

Union leaders called on the citizens not to be afraid to sign the petition and not to fall for "lies" which the Ministry of Labour and Pension System spreads under the dictate of "foreign centres of power" that such changes would harm the system and cut pensions.

Signatures will be gathered at about 300 stalls across the country from April 27 to May 11, and there will also be mobile stalls.

More news about referendums in Croatia can be found in the Politics section.