University staff extend action for two days while seeking guarantees

Administrative staff at Athens University who have been on strike for nearly three months on Wednesday extended their action through Friday in a continued protest at the government’s overhaul of the civil service but are to meet with Education Minister Constantinos Arvanitopoulos on Thursday in a bid to seek a compromise following a decision by the institution’s senate for classes to resume on Monday.

According to sources, staff will seek guarantees from Arvanitopoulos regarding the fate of staff who have been put into a labor mobility scheme where they get a reduced wage ahead of their transfer or dismissal. Protesters want to know how many staff will be able to return to their posts and when.

Athens University staff, who are said to be increasingly divided about whether to continue with their protracted walkout, are to meet on Friday to decide on their course of action. The involvement of left-leaning students, who have occupied university faculties, has complicated the matter further.

Meanwhile administrative employees at the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA), who called off their strike on Monday, are to meet on Thursday as it remains unclear which of the staff can return to their posts. According to sources, a complaint was lodged this week with the state labor inspectorate regarding the alleged illegal employment of NTUA office staff who are in the mobility scheme.

In a related development, a report by the Athens University council accuses rector Theodosis Pelegrinis of financial mismanagement, noting that the institution is owed 1.2 million euros from a private firm to which it has been renting a property for several years but has allegedly failed to collect.

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