This is a historic moment for the 250 employees of the Laboratoire National de Santé (LNS) under private law. On April 21, 2023, the LNS Direction and the only trade union represented within the laboratory, the OGBL, signed the first collective bargaining agreement in the history of the institution. This agreement comes into effect retroactively on January 1, 2023 and is concluded for a period of 3 years, i.e. until December 31, 2025.
Discussions on the introduction of a collective bargaining agreement at LNS began in 2020 – the date of the official request by the OGBL. Unfortunately, the discussions were delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Nevertheless, the negotiating partners have always been committed to substantially improving the salary and working conditions of the staff through a collective bargaining agreement.
The health crisis has clearly demonstrated the importance of coordination and collaboration among all actors in the health care system. As an essential element of the Luxembourg health system, the staff of the LNS has always shown an exemplary commitment that went far beyond mere management.
It is in this context that the first collective bargaining agreement was concluded at the LNS, which brings significant progress for the benefit of employees.
Not only are salaries increased by an average of 4.5%, but the value of the index point is now aligned with that of the civil service and the collective bargaining agreement of the Federation of Hospitals (CBA FHL). The employees concerned also benefit from an end-of-year allowance equivalent to a 13th month. In addition, the collective agreement also provides for a vacation allowance of 512 euros gross per year and a one-off bonus of 500 euros gross upon signing the collective bargaining agreement.
It is also important to note that the duty allowances are increased and that meal vouchers will be introduced for all employees.
The collective agreement also provides for an increase in the number of days of annual leave, from 28 to 32 days, plus two extra days for employees aged 50 and over, and two additional days for those aged 55 and over. A social leave of 40 hours per year and the introduction of phased early retirement are also part of the agreement.
Finally, the OGBL and the LNS management have also included in the agreement the principle of a financial development equivalent to that of the public sector, as is the case for the two major collective agreements in the sector (SAS and FHL).
Both parties see this agreement as a major step forward towards better recognition of LNS staff and their role in the Luxembourg health system. It is now more than ever a question of strengthening our health system by means of uniform working conditions and to prepare it as well as possible for future challenges.
The management of the LNS and the OGBL would like to thank all employees for their tireless commitment over the past years.
Press release by the OGBL and the Direction of the Laboratoire National de Santé
April 24, 2023
* Photo caption, from left to right: Dr. Jean-Claude Schmit (Vice-Chairman of the LNS Board of Directors), Prof. Dr. Evelin Schröck (Chairman of the LNS Board of Directors), Pitt Bach (Central Secretary of the OGBL) and Smail Suljic (Deputy Central Secretary of the OGBL)