As part of the public consultation on the implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights (EPSR), the European Commission has launched a public debate on measures at different levels intended to further implement the EPSR. With this new position paper, the Austrian Chamber of Labour (AK) proposes further implementation steps for all of the 20 principles of the EPSR, which are necessary in order to ensure substantial progress. AK has long been an active participant in the debate on the social focus of the EU and is calling for a fundamentally new social realignment of the EU. This includes a new social action program, which should contain multiple new or expanded mandatory minimum social standards. Among other things, this should include minimum standards for unemployment insurance systems and for minimum social security systems, as well as substantial progress in labour law, including the improvement of working conditions of platform workers, as well as health and care workers. The Commission’s proposal for a Directive on minimum wages is welcomed by AK, but still requires concrete improvements. Furthermore, the economic Governance framework and the European Semester are to be reoriented and a Social Progress Protocol that gives priority to fundamental social rights must be enshrined in EU primary law.

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Gloria Gruber

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