the state seeks to make financial savings amongst civil servants | EUROtoday

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PTo preserve its technique for lowering the general public deficit, which Bercy describes as “ambitious but credible”, the federal government is searching for to make financial savings in all instructions. And plans to sort out a juggernaut of public spending: the general public service. In France, with one in 5 employees (21%) working for the State, the general public payroll amounted to 327.7 billion euros in 2022, together with social safety contributions.

This represents 21.4% of public spending and 12.4% of GDP. This fee is among the highest in Europe. Among our neighbors, solely Denmark does higher with 28% of its energetic inhabitants working for the state and 13.7% of GDP dedicated to public payroll. Germany, for its half, devotes between 7% and eight% of its GDP to it, when the European common is 10.1%, in line with Eurostat figures revealed by the reference website for public funds, Fipeco. It ought to nevertheless be famous that throughout the Rhine “hospitals are almost all outside this field although they are largely financed by public expenditure”, specifies François Ecalle in a word dedicated to the general public payroll on his Fipeco website.

“Remove the taboo”

While the chief introduced on Wednesday that 10 billion extra financial savings could be vital to take care of the deficit discount forecasts in 2024, the query is on everybody's lips: are there too many civil servants? Stanislas Guerini, the Minister of Transformation and Civil Service, threw a spanner within the works on Tuesday. “I want us to lift the taboo of dismissal in the public service,” he declared in an interview with Parisian.

On Tuesday morning, the minister opened consultations with the unions on his reform for “the efficiency of the public service”. It ought to be introduced to the Council of Ministers within the fall. The standing of civil servant “has never explained that we cannot dismiss someone who does not do their job well,” the minister stated on Wednesday on France Inter, judging that the dismissal for “professional insufficiency” – but permitted by the Civil Service Code – “is very poorly defined and above all extremely poorly applied”.

Only 13 civil servants have been dismissed because of this in 2022 within the state civil service, which has 2.5 million, factors out the ministry. That identical 12 months, solely 222 brokers have been dismissed for misconduct. “We have blatant overstaffing in the administration. There are productivity gains to be had without degrading the service provided,” stated Patrick Martin, the president of Medef, on RMC the identical day.

Merit-based pay and class transformation

To rework the civil service, the minister plans to extend the burden of merit-based pay within the salaries of civil servants. It additionally intends to evaluation the executive classes A, B and C which govern the totally different our bodies of civil servants, in line with info from Echoes. According to the minister, this technique “puts glass ceilings”. “There is a label linked to diplomas that is very difficult to remove,” he declared on Sud Radio on March 22.

Finally, the chief additionally needs to assault the working time of public officers. According to info from Opinionthe Minister of the Civil Service requested all ministries to arrange, by the tip of the 12 months, a plan so that each one public workers respect the minimal length of 35 hours of annual work, or 1,607 hours .

Over a full 12 months, public workers (excluding academics) work 1,606 hours on common, in comparison with 1,699 hours for personal sector workers, this distinction being defined by the higher variety of leaves granted to civil servants. In all, 200,000 brokers would nonetheless not be working the 35 hours, the ministry estimates.

For their half, the unions welcome this reform with reluctance, fearing that it is going to be imposed on them “from above” with out their calls for being heard. For Mylène Jacquot, common secretary of the CFDT Civil Service, the ministry is just not making the precise analysis. On the 35 hours, “I'm not saying that there aren't agents who don't work 35 hours. But why ? This is often because they work staggered hours. As we cannot afford to pay more for night shifts, they are compensated in time,” believes the commerce unionist. “It is in the public service that there are the most people who work nights, evenings or weekends,” she provides.

Mylène Jacquot additionally recollects that “merit-based pay already exists in the public service through advancement, which can be more or less rapid, and variable shares in bonuses”. “Now, maybe it's not used enough but is it really effective? » asks the general secretary of the civil service of the reformist union. “We need to support the executives, that the criteria are precise… And then there are plenty of places where it is difficult to make the difference. Shouldn't we instead recognize the dynamic of service? » she questions. Not to mention that this risks “degrading the atmosphere, and users feel that”.

Attractiveness drawback

Finally, these avenues don’t handle the foundation of the issue, in line with Mylène Jacquot, particularly the shortage of attractiveness of the civil service. Between 60,000 and 70,000 positions are at present vacant within the public sector. According to the CFDT, salaries ought to be the precedence in addition to enhancing working circumstances. Over the final two years, civil servants have obtained will increase within the index level – which is used to calculate remuneration – of three.5% in 2022 and 1.5% in 2023. But this stays decrease than inflation estimated at 5 .2% in 2022 and 4.9% in 2023, deplore the unions.

For its half, the CGT Civil Service reacted by submitting a strike discover from April 15 to September 15, i.e. through the interval of the Olympic Games (from July 26 to August 11). The standoff has solely simply begun.