16. 07. 12. - 16:28
Builders demand pension changes
Builders in Vorarlberg are demanding changes to their pensions so they are compensated in later life for their hard labour.
Currently 4,900 people in the province are employed in the building industry, but few are awarded special pensions for carrying out heavy labour, despite the risks to their health.
Now unions are getting behind their members to demand better retirement packages.
According to recent figures, there are 130,000 builders nationwide, yet just 1,000 are still working over the age of 60. The others are all forced to quit their jobs due to ill health – something they do not want to do.
Josef Muchitsch, chairman of the building and woodwork trade union, says many are forced to claim disability pension, which pays EUR 630 less each month than the heavy labour pension.
He wants to see changes in legislation, which make it easier for those in the building industry to apply for better retirement pensions. Currently workers need to put in 45 years of heavy labour to claim the better pension, something which only a handful achieve.
He’s hoping further talks in Autumn with insurers and employers will take them a step nearer to better conditions.