Frank Werneke has been re-elected as chairman of the service trade union Verdi. The delegates of the Verdi Federal Congress confirmed him on Monday in Berlin with a large majority for another four years in office. Out of a total of 894 votes cast, he received 810 votes in favour, 66 against and 18 abstentions.
"From my point of view, Verdi is the most interesting and also the most promising project on the bright side of power," said Werneke. He wants to continue a collegial leadership. In 2019, Werneke was elected to succeed long-time chairman Frank Bsirske. Prior to that, he was deputy head of Verdi for 17 years.
Werneke sees a major challenge for the union in the shortage of skilled workers. "When I look at the situation, you are all suffering from the increasing labor shortage," he told delegates. "That's a massive burden." But this also changes the balance of power in favor of the union.
Since the beginning of the year, the union says it has gained 140,000 new members, more than at any time since it was founded in 2001. If nothing unusual happens by the end of December, the balance for the year as a whole is expected to increase by several tens of thousands of members.
Almost 1000 delegates come together at the federal congress in Berlin. In addition to the election of the Federal Executive Committee and the Trade Union Council, more than 900 motions on trade union, economic and social policy will be discussed until Friday. The Federal Congress meets every four years.