The common front of military unions representing all relevant organizations hopes to assemble thousands of military staff at an unusual protest march in Brussels Tuesday. The protest march comes on the day of the King’s birthday, to rally against the extension of working years approved last month by the government.
The Michel team, when defining the 2017 budget, decided, on October 15th, to progressively increase the retirement age of military personnel beginning in 2017 and to introduce career conditions (such as a minimum number of service years) before receiving the retirement pension.
The protest march is planned for Tuesday, a holiday for military staff; they do not have the right to strike. The rally is planned from 12:00 noon to 3:30 p.m. between boulevard Roi Albert II, and the Albertine, near the central station; it brings together the four “representative” organizations of the military and the three institutions “recognized” by Defence. “The military community is quite upset regarding this decision of principle. The four (largest unions) hope the government will reconsider,” stated a person in charge of CGPM, Concetto Bandinelli, to the Belga agency.
A meeting of the four representative unions is planned with the Minister of Defence, Steven Vandeput, at 12:30 p.m. at his office. “On the other hand, the Prime Minister (Charles Michel) refused to meet with a delegation”, explained the Permanent Secretary of CGSP-Defence, Patrick Descy.
Jessica Johansson (Source: Belga)