Minister of Culture Tiit Terik and the Estonian Employees' Unions' Confederation (TALO) on Friday signed a salary agreement of cultural workers, according to which the minimum salary of employees of institutions in the area of governance of the Ministry of Culture will rise to €1,400 and for other employees 2 percent will be added to the salary fund.
"The field of culture needs motivated people and the young people need confirmation that a worthy salary enables to choose specialties connected namely with culture. The minimum wage that is the basis for calculating the entire wage has not changed in the last two years, which is why the current increase of €100 is more than understandable. In addition, the heads of institutions can review the salaries of other employees, including those in the support field," the minister said.
"The state wage agreement applies to cultural workers paid from the budget of the Ministry of Culture. I call for the principles of wage policy to be followed more widely, including in local governments, where a large part of cultural work is done," Terik added.
"The €1,400 achieved is slightly less than our request, which was based on a forecast of average gross wages. Hence the sincere wish of TALO that it is expedient to ensure an increase in the minimum rate every year, otherwise the jumps would remain too high and actually inaccessible," Ago Tuuling, chairman of the management board of TALO, said.
"It is also important to approach the cultural sector comprehensively, so that the results achieved in the wage negotiations would also apply to freelance creators and all others who operate in this sector, including local governments," Tuuling said.
Some €2.8 million have been earmarked in the budget for cultural workers' salary growth. The minimum salary of cultural workers with higher education will grow 7.5 percent from €1,300 to €1,400. The salaries of the remaining staff are decided by the heads of the institutions.
Additionally, the support fund for covering the labor costs of sports coaches will increase 6.7 percent to €7.8 million. The salary support measure for instructors of groups participating in the Song and Dance Festival tradition will also continue with €2.7 million earmarked for the measure.
Editor: Kristjan Kallaste