Danish Builders Protest Against Working Conditions

Claus Von Elling gruppeformand 3F

writer icon Laura Jensen     3f   |   Culture     🕐 17. Sep. 2020

Danish builders assigned to build the new underground tunnel between Denmark and Germany have been protesting about their perceived substandard work conditions.

The demonstration against the Femern Belt Contractors (FBC) took place on yesterday morning between 09.00 and 12.00 at Vestre Kaj in Rødbyhavn.

Key protest points highlighted by the builders included the firms' decision to require them to work for 28 consecutive days, along with enforcing 12-hour working shifts.

This vast amount of work without a recovery day does not live up to the standards under which Danish builders are accustomed to.

“The Femern project is one of the largest constructions at this time, and it is being built on Danish taxpayers money. We as a society must, therefore, expect that the project is being built under orderly conditions,” said Claus von Elling, who is Chairman of 3F Byggegruppen.

“We have had concerns that with the Fehmarn construction we would experience challenges within the working environment and that we would experience ‘social dumping’, just as we experienced at the building of the Danish Metro,” said von Elling.

“All studies show that such work is very debilitating both physically and mentally. It is simply not acceptable,” he added.

Deputy Chairman of 3F Lolland, Bjarne Jensen, has been involved in the negotiations with the Dutch-dominated consortium. Despite these talks lasting for several months, the FBC has yet to sign an agreement.

"We have been negotiating since mid-February, and the agreement has been ready to be signed since we concluded the negotiations on 29 May. But they have not yet signed,” said Bjarne Jensen.

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