Hundreds of elements from the PSP and GNR demonstrated this Tuesday in Lisbon, Braga and Faro. They showed the government a “red card” and say they are on the edge.
About a hundred elements of the PSP and GNR concentrated in the Ministry of Finance, in Lisbon, to deliver an open letter to demand salary updates and a risk subsidy.
Convoked by seven PSP unions and the association of guard professionals (APG / GNR), this concentration in Lisbon takes place simultaneously with two others in Braga and Faro.
With some union flags, protesters show red cards while a delegation of leaders will deliver the letter to the Ministry of Finance.
In the letter addressed to Minister Mário Centeno, the police say they are unmotivated and complain about the lack of means, equipment and health care and demand the creation of supplements and subsidies, namely the risk one.
Braga protest before football
Dozens of members of the PSP and GNR showed red cards to the Government next to the Municipal Stadium of Braga, where this Tuesday the match between Sporting de Braga and Sporting will take place, counting for the semi-final of the League Cup.
In addition to the red cards, the protesters also used whistles to "mark the fouls" that they consider to be being committed by António Costa's executive with regard to the treatment given to the security forces.
"The main reason for our revolt is the lack of salary updates, which has been going on since 2009," said the leader of the Socio-Professional Association of the Police.
According to Paulo Rodrigues, the non-update takes on a "more dramatic" shape compared to the "low wages" earned by the security forces.
He stressed that a policeman at the beginning of his career earns 789 euros, "only 39 euros more than the minimum wage".
There are also policemen with 31 years of service who, without supplements, earn 1,200 euros. "It's miserable," he said.
Faro Police and GNR at the limit
Almost a hundred elements of the security forces also demonstrated in Jardim Manuel Bivar, in Faro, claiming to have reached the limit and promising to stop the fight only when the Government fulfills its promises.
With signs like "Portugal is the 3rd safest country in the world because there are around 40 thousand clowns who look for 10 million, how long?" or "Clowns Public security, we reached the limit" many protesters wore a red nose in their faces.
"It is a symbolic way of characterizing the way we are being treated by the government," José Rosado, a police officer for 28 years, told Lusa.
"We are not beaten by fatigue," said Fernando Raposo, national secretary of the Association of Police Professionals (ASPP / PSP) for the Algarve, revealing that the intention of the demonstration is to show that they are present and will continue "every month" until the claims of the professionals are guaranteed.
"The idea is for things to change, but to change effectively! It is not a matter of constantly negotiating and the subject falls into oblivion", he defended.
The claims include the replacement of supplements that "were improperly withdrawn" since 2011, the risk subsidy, "already approved by the Assembly of the Republic", the salary update, the creation of legislation related to hygiene and health, increase in staff and more and better personal protective equipment and the lack of material, he said.
"In Faro alone, there are about 30 vehicles waiting for funds to be repaired. They say it may be in March …" lamented the unionist.
At the Faro demonstration, police from Beja were also present, doing so "at the time of leisure", as he stated to Francisco Passinhas, national leader of ASPP / PSP and 3rd generation of police officers with "100 years of service in the family".
The union leader stressed that the risk subsidy "was approved by the deputies in the Assembly" and is not being applied, "someone is not complying with the law, as well as the statute". The leader pointed out that 45 years after April 25, "there are still second-class citizens", something that will be maintained as long as the right to strike "does not reach all citizens".