In a press conference in the courts of Madrid’s Plaza de Castilla, one of the members of the strike committee, Juan José Yáñez, explained that they feel triple deceived by the Ministry of Justice, with whom they will hold a new meeting this Friday after a first meeting last week that ended without agreement after 15 hours.
In the first place, Yáñez has cited the year 2009, in which the former judicial secretaries assumed new functions without these being reflected in their salary, he said.
The second “deception” for the strikers was the breach of a remuneration adjustment agreed in 2020, which had to do with their workload after the new functions assumed and with not charging less for working in small towns.
Finally, Yáñez has condemned that one of the fundamental demands of the conveners is not fulfilled: the so-called down payment clause, which would allow their salary to be referenced to that of judges and prosecutors, so that lawyers never charge less than 85% of these two legal operators.
As he has stated, this was one of the commitments assumed by Justice in April 2022, originally proposed by the ministry, but which the lawyers have made their fundamental demand along with non-economic discrimination for working in small towns.
The impact of the strike
With an impact of 195,000 suspended trials and hearings -55,000 of them this week- and some 800 million euros pending delivery as a result of the strike, officials maintain that the responsibility for justice to be stopped lies with the ministry, which they accuse to break his word.
In addition, according to the lawyers, there are 290,000 demands pending distribution, of which 30,000 would correspond to Madrid.
For this reason, the lawyers have released a Justice document from April 2022 -now deleted from its website- in which the ministry considered “reasonable and timely” the “existence of a down payment clause to the remuneration system for the judicial career and fiscal”.
Through this document, Justice undertook to promote “the modification of the precise normative instruments so that the remuneration of the Corps of Lawyers of the Administration of Justice refer to those corresponding to the judicial career, in the proportion of improvement that is considered appropriate to the responsibilities inherent to this group”.
Yáñez has assured that they are open “to seek alternative solutions”, but that they will maintain their strike for a “question of dignity”.
“We are former opponents, persistent, resilient. We will work one day after another after another in pursuit of the goal for as long as it takes ”, he added.
The strike committee is willing to negotiate with Justice until an agreement is reached
And in allusion to the first meeting that they held with Justice between five in the afternoon last Thursday and eight in the morning of the following day, and which passed in silence by both parties for several hours, he specified that the strike committee is willing to negotiate “all afternoon, all night and all weekend” to reach an agreement in the new meeting to which they have been summoned this Friday.
This time, the lawyers have been summoned at number 21 Calle San Bernardo in Madrid, one of the headquarters of the ministry where the General Secretary for Innovation and Quality of the Public Justice Service, Manuel Olmedo, has his office, for which Carlos Artal, also a member of the strike committee, assumes that he will be the one to chair the meeting, limited this time to an hour and a half.
In response to the lawyers, Justice maintains that only one of the eleven demands raised by the associations of former court clerks remains to be met and considers their salary requests out of place, when their salaries are going to grow on average by 14.76% in three years.
Congressional groups urge to resolve the conflict of Justice lawyers
The parliamentary groups of Congress have expressed this Wednesday the need to resolve the conflict with the lawyers of the Administration of Justice, on strike for almost a month, although PSOE and PP have reproached each other for responsibility for this problem and others in this area .
The Plenary of the Lower House has debated a motion of the PP so that, among other issues, the Congress urges the Government to promptly resolve the labor conflict with said group, made up of the formerly called judicial secretaries, and to recover the delay in the procedural actions that is generating this indefinite strike, which began on January 24, an initiative that will be voted on this Thursday.
However, PSOE, Podemos, ERC and PNV have already advanced their vote against, considering that the motion introduces issues that have nothing to do with the purpose of the initiative and that it has an electoral background.