The European Trade Union Confederation today welcomed the European Commission’s Social Fairness package.
ETUC General Secretary Luca Visentini said: “These initiatives should bring some real improvements for working people and ensure that the principles of the European Pillar of Social Rights are implemented through binding measures that make a positive difference to people’s lives. It’s a step forward which the ETUC welcomes as far as it goes.
“A European Labour Authority is clearly needed to combat cross-border social fraud. It must be about protecting workers – not be yet another internal market tool - and respect national industrial relations systems.
“A recommendation on access to social protection offers hope of adequate social protection for all working people regardless of their employment status, type of contract or its duration, including freelancers, platform and self-employed workers.
“Obviously there is still a lot more to be done to address social fairness by the EU and member states, with full involvement of employers and trade unions at all levels, but the package does offer some opportunities to reduce inequality and precariousness.”
ETUC Confederal Secretary Liina Carr said: “The ETUC will be working hard to get Ministers and MEPs to adopt and implement the proposals. We want to make sure that the European Labour Authority has the status, mandate and funding to fight cross-border social fraud effectively. We also want to make sure it has trade unions and employers involved in decision-making.
“We will be pressing to make sure that all workers, including the 40% of the workforce that are self-employed and especially so-called non-standard workers, have access to adequate pensions, unemployment benefit, health care and other benefits. If implemented this would help reduce poverty.”