Around 2,000 Croatian nurses protest for higher pay

Source: Xinhua| 2019-10-03 22:45:38|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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ZAGREB, Oct. 3 (Xinhua) -- About 2,000 nurses marched through the center of the capital Zagreb on Thursday demanding a pay rise.

They protested against an agreement which their union leaders recently reached with the government, which includes salary increase for doctors and nurses by an average of 7 percent.

Nurses on Thursday protested without union's support, organizing themselves through social media. They said that the latest deal with the government is bad for them because it secures them just 50 kuna (around 7 U.S. dollars) higher salaries.

"A protest is just the first step. We are demanding a 25-percent pay rise and other benefits," Sanda Alic, one of the organizers, told reporters.

In front of the government building, nurses spoke about bad working conditions in Croatian hospitals and noted that patients in Croatia are in danger because there are not enough nurses in hospitals.

Croatian Health Minister Milan Kujundzic said that the government already increased salaries for nurses and doctors and that there is no room for further increase.

"At this point, the government has done the maximum it can. In three years, their salaries have increased by 18 percent," said Kujundzic.

The Croatian government is under pressure from other unions as well. On Tuesday, Croatian teachers announced that they would strike on Oct. 10 due to the lack of negotiations with the government.