One in five blue-collar workers take painkillers with their morning coffee every day. To these people – six months? longer on the labour market means another six months of pain.

Cutting funds for prevention of burnout and attrition

The government has chosen to cut funds for the National Working Environment Authority with more than DKK 100m in the coming years.

The problem is that the Working Environment Authority is tasked with controlling health and safety at work and preventing attrition, accidents and absence due to sickness.

In addition to this, the Fund for Better Working Environment and Labour Retention, which has helped employees who are – or at risk of – experiencing physical or mental burnout, has been discontinued. The Government has discontinued this work even though there were still DKK 450m left in the fund.

Why? – Nobody knows.

Successful projects such as ?the career switch package? have also been discontinued.

This was an otherwise popular offer that helped employees with attrition find new types of jobs, and companies and employees were encouraged to make work processes less arduous so that employees would have more good years on the labour market and as pensioners.

Tax cuts before welfare

The government would rather offer lower top-bracket tax and cheaper property tax for the wealthiest property owners than to help those with the most physically demanding work.

It is one thing is to give a lower priority to those who have the heaviest work.

It is another thing to want to raise the retirement age even further than otherwise agreed, which would be yet another disadvantage to this group of people.

It is not only unwise and unsympathetic – It is also unnecessary.

No burning platform

There is no reason to raise that retirement age sooner, as the Liberal Party, which is currently in government would have us believe.

The public finances are in order. And according to the Danish Economic Council – there is no burning platform.

This is also what we in the trade union movement have been pointing out.

And this is what a large majority in the population says.

Even inside the Liberal Party, there are many who are against raising the retirement age even further.

More than half of the party?s own electorate believe that the party should abandon its stance.

Why doesn?t the Prime Minister listen?

If the centre-right politicians believe that they can tighten the noose even further, without consequences, they are mistaken.


Not all workers can extend their working lives

Denmark does not need tax cuts for the wealthiest.

We need investments into the welfare of the population.

Investments that improve the well-being and health of workers – both physically and mentally.

And we need a government and a Parliament that takes the lives of workers seriously and which acknowledges that not all workers can endure a longer working life.


The article is a translation of the LO-President’s blog post in online newspaper “Arbejderen”.