Written Statement Directive - ETUC Comments

Commenting on European Commission’s announcement today on the Written Statement Directive, ETUC General Secretary Luca Visentini said

The ETUC welcomes the European Commission taking forward its proposal for a revision of the Written Statement Directive. The European Commission’s proposals are a decent basis for discussion. The ETUC has engaged constructively from the outset in this debate, and will be warning the Commission to keep clear of time-wasting by anyone who wants to kill this proposal.

“The ETUC supports the initiatives for a strong European Pillar of Social Rights, and wants it to be delivered soon and in concrete terms, including further legislative action. We want an action plan for implementation to be launched after the Pillar is adopted. We don’t just want nice principles, we want specific initiatives to improve the lives of working people.

ETUC Confederal Secretary Esther Lynch added

In this age of organisations claiming not be to employers, of bogus self-employment and of hugely complex contracting and sub-contracting, it is increasingly difficult for working people to get accurate information on the nature of their employment. All too often workers do not get any information on their terms and conditions of employment and are denied even the basics such as the start and finish times for the working day. Sometimes contracts are constructed more with the purpose of denying the worker rights than guaranteeing them.

"Legal reform is needed to give working people the information they need to earn a living and to enforce their rights.

“The Commission’s proposal does not properly cover the self-employed worker but it does cover gig or platform workers which is very helpful as it gives clarity that platforms cant evade their responsibilities as employers.

"It contains some useful proposals such as a guarantee of minimum hours, but it is unclear when this right will begin, workers need it from the first day of employment."

On probation periods the ETUC is seeking more information, as it is unclear if the Commission expects workers to be protected during the probation period or if it wants to allow employers to fire people at will during the probation period.

For more on the ETUC’s stance on the social pillar see  https://www.etuc.org/speeches/etuc-state-european-union-speech