European Federation of Journalists

Sweden: New agreement signed for all freelance members

The EFJ affiliate in Sweden, Svenska Journalistförbundet, has announced the signature of a new collective agreement with Almega Medieföretagen covering all freelance journalists and media workers. “This agreement is an important step forward to strengthen the position of freelance journalists in Sweden,” said Jonas Nordling, President of the Swedish union of journalists.

EFJ President, Mogens Blicher Bjerregård, quickly congratulated the Swedish colleagues for what he qualified as an “impressive collective agreement for all freelancers”.

It is important to note that the agreement covers all freelance members in relation to media outlets which are members of Almega Medieföretagen (the media employers’ organisation). According to Svenska Journalistförbundet, the new collective agreement will come into force on September 1, 2015 and all freelance members will benefit from improvements on several points.  For the first time all areas of freelance works, including commercial broadcasting, is included in the new agreement. The same rules will apply for all media workers and the trade union will do everything to inform its members about their rights. The agreement also has a new rule to attribute a certain amount of financial retribution when a freelance journalist with regular collaboration must face the end of his contractual collaboration. Recurring freelance assignments for the same client (no matter the area) is now regarded as permanent agreements for the Swedish social partners. Previously this rule was restricted to freelancers working for newspapers and magazines. The agreement states that the client (media outlet) will pay, in addition to the fees, extra costs to freelance journalist in connection with its assignment.

Media companies agreed to inform their partners and sister companies about the existence of the Freelance Calculator created by the Swedish union of journalists in order to use a fair price with freelancers for their assignments.

More details about the new collective agreement for Swedish freelancers will be posted before September on the Swedish union of jourrnalists’ website.