“Fat cat Brussels bureaucrats are threatening to strike over plans to make them work eight hours a day – because they say it will wreck their ‘family life’.
EU bosses are asking civil servants – among the best paid public officials in the world – to stay behind in the office for an extra half hour a day to save costs.
The move would take their five-day working week from 37-and-a-half hours up to just 40 hours.
This would still be less than the 41-and-a-half hours undertaken by the average British full-time worker.
But unions representing EU civil servants will refuse to consider any extension to their working week, saying longer hours would affect the ‘attractiveness’ of their jobs.
Critics demanded unions representing 55,000 EU staff – 1,322 of whom are British – ‘get real’ over the modest change to working hours at a time when millions all over the continent are losing their jobs or having to work longer.
The European Commission has demanded the cost-cutting move following mounting pressure from national governments to cut Brussels’ administrative budget.
- Staff at EU institutions enjoy a number of perks. Here the Mail details their pampered lifestyle.
- HOURS: Staff are only expected to work 37 and a half hours a week, and if they work longer they are entitled to time off in lieu.
- HOLIDAYS: 42 days a year (including 24 days of annual leave, seven days of public holidays and 11 ‘non-working’ days when EU institutions are closed).
- FLEXITIME: Staff can get another 24 days off a year if they work for an extra 45 minutes in the office every day – adding up to a total of 66 days off when added to holidays.
- SALARIES: Forty per cent of European Comm- ission staff earn more than £70,000 – compared with just 1 per cent of British civil servants.
- EXPATRIATION ALLOWANCE: An extra 16 per cent on top of your salary if you are a non-Belgian in Brussels.
- PENSIONS: Gold–plated pensions, with officials getting 19 per cent of their final salary after just ten years’ service.
- LUNCH: Free meals and drinks in work canteens.
- SCHOOLS: EU staff can send children to one of 14 private EU schools, with taxpayers footing the bill for fees of up to £14,000 a year.