EurActiv - Letters to the Editor

Sir,

Regarding ‘EU staff consider strike over pay freeze‘:

Whilst the article is factually correct, one has to wonder about the relevance of the comparisons with certain member states.

Ireland is in a crisis which is largely due to “irrational exuberance”. Yet only the highest-paid civil servants (who are certainly not totally innocent in respect of this exuberance) will have to accept a salary cut. Staff at EU institutions would be punished across the board, down to the last lowly secretary.

Lithuania (and the other Baltic states) favoured an unsustainable economic model. Voters acknowledged this concept by putting neo-liberal governments into office. Again, it seems only fair that Lithuanians face the necessary corrections.

Hungary slashes a 13th month salary. Well, EU staff never had such thing in the first place.

My suggestion is simple: pay EU staff a weighted average of the salaries which diplomats from the six founding members which are in the euro zone receive.

These would be exactly the people who are now deliberating the EU staff salaries in the Council. Let’s see whether member states are prepared to give EU staff the resulting massive salary increase, incl. all tax exemptions that diplomats still receive as if we were living in the 19th century.

With Christmas approaching the old saying of goose, gander and sauce comes to mind. But then again hypocrisy seems to be constitutionally enshrined in many member states.

Ronald Grünebaum

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