After the labor reform and in full negotiation for the rise of the Minimum Interprofessional Wage, the consolidation of a Scholarship Statute is making its way as the main pending task of the Ministry of Labor and Social Economy headed by Yolanda Díaz. The Government and specifically, Unidas Podemos, promised to improve the conditions faced by many young people in their first contact with the labor market, that is, as scholarship holders. The unions and this ministry closed a first agreement in the month of October, however, after the refusal of the businessmen and a sector of the universities to accept it as good, the negotiation seems to have returned to a deadlock.
In the meetings with the executive, the CCOO and the UGT have reiterated their desire to put an end to extracurricular practices, since they have detected that this is where an important bag of fraud is concentrated. Students in their last year or recent graduates start a training relationship with companies subject to the study center to which they belong. However, these internship scholarships are not part of their degree, master’s or cycle program, so on many occasions, young people who have already obtained their degree resort to specialized companies that offer hours of courses of the number of hours that they will pass. in the company that has ‘signed’ them.
This requirement was included in the first agreement signed between the unions and the Ministry of Labour. It established that once the new regulations were approved, a period of one year would be granted for companies and universities to adapt to the change. However, the last proposal sent from the Executive to the union representatives and employers, widened this margin of adaptation to three years, something that has surprised both the CCOO and the UGT, according to what they have transferred to La Información, who are not resigning. nothing that has already been agreed with the portfolio led by Yolanda Diaz.
UGT sources present in the negotiation confess that they expected the ministry to summon them to a new meeting this week, however, the call has not reached their mailboxes. Along the same lines, from the CCOO they point out that the new meeting will take place in February, but they emphasize that the negotiation margin is a case, they do not want to talk about red lines and they are waiting to know the new proposal, but they insist on the importance of respecting the issue of extracurricular practices. Union representatives seek to promote training contracts, whether these are alternating or for the acquisition of professional practice. In these cases, the relationship becomes labor, so false workers would no longer be concealed in the figure of the scholarship or non-assessable practices.
The initial forecast of the ministerial portfolio was that the statute would go ahead in the first three months of this year, however this goal seems increasingly difficult to achieve if the consensus of all the actors involved is to be sought. The CEOE has not been satisfied with ending extracurricular practices and neither have some universities and private centers, who understand that this is a positive way for young people to access the job market. In addition, the negotiators have doubts that the usual partners of the government will support this law in its parliamentary process, given that both in Catalonia and in the Basque Country this sector has an important weight, which could make it difficult for the pro-independence parties to support .
From UGT they assure that they are open to negotiating any improvement with respect to the initial text, but they will not renounce anything sealed in October. However, among them they do not consider that the obligation to pay the scholarship holders be included, since they consider that the important thing is that the expenses that the position generates, such as per diems or transportation, are compensated. “We conceive non-labor practices as such, we do not want to replace workers.” “We are concerned that compensation will stop being compensation and become a substitute for wages that is used to exploit people,” they point out from the union.
The next few weeks will be key so that this project does not remain a dead letter, since once the electoral campaign for the municipal and regional elections is fully entered, all the formations will reinforce their positions on issues that may be especially relevant for the distribution of votes The vote of young people represents a very small percentage among adults with the right to introduce a historic ballot at the polls, on the other hand, the opinion of the other actors involved could lead to a substantial difference in votes, especially in the territories .