- Utilisation of annual leave
- SEK camps
- Trips abroad for SEK members
- The Central Leave Fund
- Subsidised workers' leave
Utilisation of annual leave
Over the past few years, there has been a substantive improvement in utilising annual leave. More and more workers take part in organised trips and spend their holidays abroad. The great majority of workers spend their leave in SEK and other camps, as well as hotels, which have started to offer special prices to SEK members.
The first phase of the SEK camp in Kato Amiantos was concluded in 1995 and the camp started to operate in September of the same year, hosting seminars for SEK officers and members.
The camp is planned to host members' children during July, and families for their annual leave, in a pleasant and natural environment.
Apart from the Amiantos camp, the SEK Builders' Federation has a camp in the village of Kannavia, while other plans operate for members of Government and Military Workers' Federation and the Private Sector Workers' Federation, as well as the Semi-Governmental Workers' Federation. The Government and Military Workers' Federation is also erecting a seaside holiday complex in Paralimni, which is expected to be completed within the year 2001, aimed at offering upgraded holidays to members.
A large number of members and their families enjoy the SEK holiday plans every year.
Trips abroad for SEK members
Organised trips abroad for SEK members are not only a good service, but also a necessary one. For many years, the trips were organised by the SEK Central Organising Office and all members, irrespective of age, participated. However, experience showed that members are better served through trips organised by the districts and departments of SEK. Over the past few years, the district Labour Centres organise trips for their members, under the supervision of SEK. At the same time, the Youth, Women's and Pensioners' Departments organise their own trips, thus giving the opportunity to a larger number of members to take part and special arrangements are made to meet the needs of the members of each department.
Recently, SEK tendered a competition and reached an agreement with a specific tourist organisation to provide special trip prices and packages for SEK members, in the context of efforts to further broaden its services towards it members.
The Central Leave Fund
The Central Leave Fund was established according to the Annual Paid Leave Law of 3.3.1967. The Law provides that all employers are obliged to contribute to the Fund to safeguard the holidays of their employees. Furthermore, the Law gives the right of exclusion to those employers who provide paid leave to their employees, with better terms than those provided for by the Law. We must clarify that the Law sets out the minimum annual leave, which is now three full weeks. SEK, through its policy that leave must be given according to the service of workers, achieved along with the other trade unions to include in collective agreements longer annual leave than that provided for by the Law. Today, many employers are excluded from the provisions of the Law, as they provide longer annual leave. For history's sake, we must mention that the Central Leave Fund, which is handled by the government, was established in 1967. Until then, the trade unions had their own funds, which operated successfully for over twenty years. We must also clarify that the Fund pays for leave one year after the date on which the employers made their contributions for their employees.
Subsidising workers' leave
Since it was established, the Central Leave Fund subsidises workers who take leave through the Fund, in order to properly utilise their leave. The board of the Fund, in cooperation with the labour and employers' organisations, sets out criteria and subsidises holidays in hotels situated in Cyprus mountains. Over the time, the Plan was expanded to subsidise holidays at seaside resorts.
The criteria have been set out in a way that on one hand encourages workers to use the plan, and on the other gives priority to low-income workers. Special attention was given to the time period the Plan is in effect, so as to cater for members' preferences of seaside or mountain resorts.
To encourage internal tourism, a second plan was implemented, to cover weekend holidays.
The Central Leave Fund also subsidises holidays at trade union holiday sites, for workers, families and pensioners.