Herrschaftsfreie Basisgewerkschaft – Österreichische Sektion der IAA

Continued labor dispute in the Secession! A short overview

In ArbeiterInnenkämpfe Ö, English, Kunst/ Kultur on 12. Dezember 2021 at 22:45

dieser Artikel auf Deutsch/ lee este artículo en castellano

The affected marginally employed workers of the Secession continue to fight for compliance with labour law at their place of work. The management has already agreed to put some of the points to practice, but has not yet agreed with all the points. Your practical solidarity is therefore still necessary. Here is a short and sweet overview of what has happened so far.

Goals of the marginally empoyed workers

1. Minimum labour standards

Hourly billing during the pandemic:

  1. reimbursement of illegally deducted plus hours during the “Lockdowns”
  2. reimbursement of illegally cancelled holidays during the “Lockdowns”
  3. withdrawal of illegally generated minus hours, even outside the “Lockdowns”
  4. calculate halved working days during the exit restriction as whole days and not as hours


  1. no communication outside working hours
  2. vacations in which the workers were contacted must be credited back
  3. no unpaid stand-by duty
  4. remuneration of previous stand-by duty with 800 Euro flat rate per person


  1. no extra work, payment of timecredit and overtime with surcharge

In addition:

  1. payment of holiday overtime rates and Sunday bonus
  2. no activities other than stated in the job description
  3. punctual notification of the work schedule
  4. handing over of the works agreement at the conclusion of the contract
  5. the agreements also apply to former marginally employed workers

2. necessary improvements

  1. no more isolated communication
  2. more staff
  3. step-in bonus
  4. basic equipment (water, clothing)
  5. salary increase to at least 450 euros
  6. designation “Springer_in” hast to be changed

→ The management has agreed to implement 6 out of 20 points (5, 9, 12, 14, 19 and 20), the majority is still open!

Chronology of events

Februaryfirst colleague throws in the towel because of untenable conditions and quits
Augustthe colleagues start to organize, all agree that „something has to happen“
23.9.new board of directors takes over at the Secession; we wait with contacting to have with „the new ones“ maybe also an unburdened basis
9.10.registered letter of WAS to the management of the Secession with a list of the labor law grievances and an offer for talks
13.10.phone call of the Secession management to WAS with an appointment for 21.10.
21.10.first meeting between WAS and management: precise description of all problem areas under labour law, including valid legal norms; listing of the specific goals of the marginally employed; management agrees that contacting during free time will stop immediately
„early justified resignation“ (possibility of the Austrian labour law to leave immediately with all entitlements when the company is not correct, kind of fireing from employees side) of the next colleague because of the conditions
22.10.the colleagues are contacted in the free time …
pre-postponement of the next meeting date via email by the management to 10.11.
25.10.WAS calls the management by phone that the agreement of 21.10. has been broken and the colleagues are called again during their spare time; the contacts in the free time are stopped from then on
2.11.after a plenary meeting of the affected marginally employed, WAS sends an email to the management stating that they will not take any action until the next meeting and that they accept the very long deadline of three weeks
10.11.second date of talks: commitment by Secession on a few points of the goals, refusal on the remaining points, ex-colleague was forgotten, commitment to inform by 12.11. whether the „offer“ also applies to him
12.11.no communication about the ex-colleague, agreement is broken by Secession
15.11.WAS email with improvements and deadline to confirm them until 17.11.
17.11.Secession ignores our improvements and deadline
two calls of WAS to the management to make clear that we will do the rally if we continue to be ignored
18.11.„threat“ of the workers‘ council to the colleagues concerned that they should not do the demonstration
letters from Secession to the marginally employed workers: some of these contain incorrect time lists, in addition, accumulated overtime from 2018 and 2019 was simply set to zero; in some cases 105 hours of overtime per colleague „disappeared“ in January 2020
WAS-OTS mailing with information about the rally the next day
19.11.invitation by the Secession board to all Secession employees to get to know each other and to talk to each other
WAS protest rally in front of the Secession during the opening of the exhibition
23.11.email of the colleagues to the board: acceptance of the invitation with information that they will come accompanied by another (external) WAS-member
WAS email to management pointing out incorrect time lists in letters and recommending professional or external payroll services
25.11.email from board: denial of accompaniment by external WAS member
26.11.email from the management: payment date of the promised claims could not be met due to overload of payroll accounting (postponement from November to December) plus sketchy promise for „due claims“
29.11.email of the colleagues to the management board that they postpone any discussion until after the management has met the minimum standards under labor law
email from WAS to the management that the struggle will continue until all points (see above) are fulfilled or at least promised in writing
in the new lockdown, there is no information yet on how the marginalized workers are supposed to work; they are standing in front of closed doors; on email inquiry, it is said that the information on this is posted in the Secession, where, however, the colleagues have no access due to a lack of keys, …
30.11.third colleague quits, among other things because of these conditions
3.12.new vague information from the management that an external payroll audit of the claims is unfortunately delayed
13. 12.Discussion between employees and the director, which was called „Jour fix“. All employees from the sections cash desk/guarding/shop are invited. Practically all colleagues confirm the problem areas which were publicised and are in solidarity with the marginally employed. The management again admits that mistakes were made and announces that also the payments of the regular employees will be newly billed. From February on, there should be structural changes. The management talks about how problematic WAS is for a long time and how the wished the employees would organise with ÖGB, the big yellow trade union.
The management carries on with not talking to WAS and there is still no answer regarding the points that have to be implemented!
16.12.Rally in front of the Secession
22.12.Letter from the Secession to the colleagues with a „recalculation“; this results in a few thousand euros in back pay, but is again wrong in essential points (13th & 14th salary, minus hours, …); the management is pushing for signatures under „agreements“ that all claims would be settled with this payment; on-call duty is still categorically denied
JanuaryAfter repeated false accounting by the Secession, the recalculation of the last few years is now being meticulously recalculated by WAS itself. At the same time, different sources report that there is a real positive change and restructuring in the Secession. If applicable, we will publish more detailed information on this at a later date.
09.02.Article on the labor conflict published in the street newspaper Augustin issue 545.
This chronology will be continuously updated. Last update: 9th February 2022.

Continue to support the colleagues until they get what they are entitled to!

Article published 04.12.2021 at WAS Blog. Copying with source reference possible.


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