As a fierce supporter of an ambitious and encompassing European Pillar of Social Rights which brings real improvements to workers and citizens, CESI welcomes in particular the European Parliament’s positive view on a new directive on decent working conditions which ensures for every worker a core set of enforceable rights regardless of the type of contract or employment relationship. CESI President Romain Wolff said: “Digitalisation and new forms of work continue to fragment labour markets and traditional employment relationships at great speed. EU legislation needs to be updated to protect people active in newly created legal vacuums.”
CESI appreciates that the report also calls for legislative proposals to facilitate work-life balance including on maternity leave, paternity leave, parental leave, carers’ leave, and access to quality care services.
Moreover, the report expects the Commission to step up concrete support for strengthening and respecting social dialogue at all levels and sectors. Romain Wolff noted: “President Juncker announced a New start for social dialogue over two years ago. As a recognised sectoral social partner, at CESI we believe that still more can be done to support inclusive social dialogue and trade union pluralism. All workers should count, regardless of their trade union affiliation.”
Finally, the report calls for adequate social investments, which are necessary to reach the objectives of the Pillar. CESI Secretary General Klaus Heeger stressed: “I strongly believes that more investments in human capital are required to uphold social cohesion and thereby also the future of Europe. This applies especially to areas such as investments in early childhood education and care, primary and secondary education, training and active labour market policies.” I am glad that the report of the European Parliament reflects this idea to a considerable extent.
During the past year, CESI positioned itself as a clear proponent of many of the objectives that the report calls for. In particular, CESI has recently been working intensively in the field of ‘Social and economic returns of social investments’ and launched an initiative on this together with social NGO groups last week.
Klaus Heeger concluded: “CESI as a voice of workers and the European Parliament as the voice of the citizens have positioned themselves. Now it is on the Commission to deliver. We need an ambitious Social Pillar and more social investments, of course based on clear rules.”
The full report of the European Parliament can be accessed here.