AK EUROPA, the Brussels Office of the Austrian Federal Chamber of Labour and ÖGB Europabüro, the Brussels Office of the Austrian Trade Union Federation would like to cordially invite you to our event:
Barbara Teiber, Chairwoman of the Austrian Union of Private Sector Employees, Printing, Journalism, and Paper (GPA - djp)
Santina Bertulessi, Deputy Head of Cabinet to Commissioner Nicolas Schmit
Agnes Jongerius, MEP, S&D Coordinator EMPL - Committee, European Parliament
Maxime Cerutti, Director of the Social Affairs Department at BusinessEurope
Aline Hoffmann, European Trade Union Institute (ETUI)
On 14th January 2020, the EU Commission presented a communication on creating a strong social Europe for a just transition. Also launched on this day was the initial phase of the social partner consultation on the issue of fair minimum wages.
The Mobility Package, which was extremely controversially discussed by the EU institutions since May 2017, is nearing completion. As this Package newly regulates the working and social conditions for HGV and bus drivers as well as market access for transport companies, it could have made a large contribution to the fight against wage and social dumping. However, the agreement of the trilogue negotiations between Council, Parliament and Commission, which was reached on 12th December 2019, only provides actual improvements for the driving personnel in some points.
Scandals such as Dieselgate and Cambridge Analytica have clearly exposed the fact that law enforcement for consumers in Europe – in particular in comparison to the USA – is insufficient. Hence, the proposal for a Directive on representative actions is an important milestone for European consumers. The trilogue negotiations on this important legal act will start In January.
Particularly in the run up to Christmas, Amazon’s business is booming. Criticism of the tech giant appears not to have impact on consumers’ shopping behaviour - the power of the company, based on dubious and anti-trade union strategies, is growing.
In countries such as Germany and France, every three days a woman is killed by a violent partner or ex-partner. So far in 2019, the number of victims in Austria has reached 19. The 25th November reminds us year after year that violence against women and girls remains at a constant high level. The ratification of the so-called Istanbul Convention at EU level would be a step in the right direction.
In the aftermath of the 2008 crisis, unemployment figures reached a peak of more than 26 million in the EU in 2013. Principle 13 of the European Pillar of Social Rights states that the unemployed have the right to adequate unemployment benefits of reasonable duration. Unemployment insurance schemes exist in all EU Member states, however they vary considerably and do not always offer sufficient protection. AK proposes the introduction of common minimum standards for unemployment insurance schemes in EU Member States.
Within the scope of an evening event, AK EUROPA, the Brussels liaison offices of the Austrian Trade Union Federation (ÖGB Europabüro) and the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) presented perspectives on European minimum standards in unemployment insurance and minimum income schemes on 14th November 2019. The timing was well chosen; after all, the event took place shortly before the second birthday of the European Pillar of Social Rights (EPSR) and provided important impetus for the new European legislative period.
The results of researching social mobility in Europe were presented and associated problems and possible solutions were discussed during a high-level event organised by the European Parliamentary Research Service. It was acknowledged that social status and education in Europe are still inherited.
On 6th November 2019, the Social Protection Committee published its Annual Report on the social situation in Europe. The Committee, which consists of representatives of Member States and the Commission, advises the Council for Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs (EPSCO) and provides comprehensive analyses regarding the social security of citizens in Europe.