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Striking Zurich police refuse to hand out fines

From midnight on Thursday police officers in Zurich have been on strike, refusing to hand out fines for minor traffic offences.

The move is in protest against the city authorities’ cost cutting measures and heavy work load.

The Zurich Police Officers Association has called in a statement for a rise in salaries from 2012 and an increase in the number of officers. It is also protesting about extra night and weekend duties.

“Police chiefs want to squeeze more out of us,” Werner Karlen, the union’s president, told the Tages-Anzeiger newspaper.

During the strike, drivers will only be made aware of minor speeding and parking offences but will not be given a fine. But more serious and dangerous offences will be punished.

The industrial action was originally planned to last 90 days. However, a meeting between union officials, city councillor Daniel Leupi and the chief of Zurich city police is scheduled for Friday afternoon.

The Zurich city police action follows the lead of Geneva police, who refused to wear their uniforms, shave or hand out disciplinary fines during a strike called by their staff union in February.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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