São Paulo techies get pay rise following strike

But the increase in pay did not meet original expectations
Written by Angelica Mari, Contributing Writer

The Brazilian Ministry of Labor has granted a pay increase to technology workers employed by companies based in the state of São Paulo following a strike and a court battle that lasted several months.

The original demands of the nearly 100,000 union-represented, São Paulo-based IT professionals were core to negotiations that kicked off in December 2013 and included a 10 percent salary increase, daily meal subsidies of R$17 ($7,60), maternity leave of 180 days, contributions towards private healthcare cover and profit share plans.

Following several rounds of negotiations with the body representing the employers, the techies ended up getting a response to their main demands on Monday (30), but the final ruling fell short of expectations. A 7,5 percent pay increase was granted, along with daily meal subsidies of R$15 ($6,70).

Additionally, every IT company in the state of São Paulo will have to present profit share plans to their staff this year.

Seprosp, the body representing the tech employers, had offered a 6.2 percent pay rise, daily meal subsidies of R$14 ($6,30) for companies that employ more than 50 staff and profit sharing plans for companies with more than 30 employees.

At the time, Seprosp president Luigi Nese told ZDNet some of the workers' demands were "hard to meet."

All the updated conditions will be backdated to January 1. Employers will also be forced to pay staff for the day of the strike, February 21. The stability of striking employees - which is something employers union Seprosp was trying to prevent - was maintained.

Since the strike of São Paulo techies took place in February, the Ministry of Labor requested the temporary suspension of the action until a ruling established a common ground between staff and employers. Between the strike suspension and the final court decision this week, over 500 agreements took place between the workers union and technology companies to secure the terms that are now valid for all firms in the state.

"With over 500 agreements signed [between the workers union and companies] we managed to prove that the employers union was wrong when it said that IT companies could not afford better salaries and benefits for their employees," says the president of Sindpd, the body representing the professionals, Antonio Neto.

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