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Under pressure from the EU, Italian women civil servants to delay retirement PDF Print E-mail
Jun 11, 2010 at 12:26 AM
Well, they've been talking about it for years - literally. But now  thanks to a final push by the European Union, Italian women have now won greater equality - but you can bet they aren't feeling very thankful.

On Thursday, the Italian cabinet approved a last-minute measure to raise the retirement age for women in the public sector from 60 to 65 by 2012. The move, which the Italian government had been planning to delay for another few years, followed a demand by the European Commission in Brussels that the country raise the retirement age for women in the public sector to 65, the same age as men, or face prosecution by the European Court of Justice (ECJ). In 2008, the Court ruled that Italy had to impose the same retirement age for men and women but the government had not responded.

Until recently, Italian civil servants, men and women alike, had been able to retire after a logging in a certain number of years of work (which inexplicably included the years spent at university) even if this meant leaving their jobs at the age of 50. Under pressure from financial markets, the government recently raised the public sector retirement age but the five year gap between men and women remained. The European Union said this was not possible and, finally, the government - and women civil servants - were forced to bow to the inevitable.

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