A protest by Bulgarian police, firefighters and prison warders against proposals to raise their retirement age and against working conditions is to start on June 12, bringing participants to Sofia from various parts of the country.
According to the Interior Ministry Trade Union Federation, discussions and decisions regarding reform in the sector are conducted with “open neglect” of the views of professional organisations of employees in the security sector and quite often without them being informed.
Borislav Maznev, deputy chairperson of the Interior Ministry Trade Union Federation, told the media that the protest would be the largest of its kind that the country has seen.
The protest is to include a tent camp outside the National Assembly in the Bulgarian capital city.
Grievances include a proposal to increase the retirement age in the security sector, working conditions and the deployment to the special operation at the Turkish border in the face of illegal migration.
Maznev said that salaries of Bulgarian police were half of those received by their counterparts in Romania and were 10 times lower than police salaries in Germany and the Netherlands.
He said that compensation paid on the death of a police officer was 250 000 euro in Spain but in Bulgaria the sum was 10 000 leva (about 5000 euro).
The protest begins at 5pm at the garden in front of the Sv Sedmochislenitsi church. On June 13, it continues at the same place from 1pm. On June 14, there will be a tent camp at the Monument to the Tsar Liberator near Parliament.
It is expected that on June 12, Interior Minister Roumyana Buchvarova will meet union representatives at the ministry.
Unionists have called on employees of the Interior Ministry, Ministry of Justice, the military, State Agency for National Security and State Agency for Technical Operations to support their protest.