Measures fall short of protecting posted workers in the outbreak of COVID-19
Posted workers in the EU face particular challenges in view of the COVID-19 outbreak and the measures imposed, not only in terms of border restrictions on the free movement of workers and services, but also in terms of emergency measures introduced to mitigate and protect workers and businesses from negative consequences of the crisis. Posted workers are at particular risk of being left behind.
On 13 May 2020, the European Commission issued a Communication on a phased and coordinated approach for restoring freedom of movement and lifting internal border controls. This guidance document is complemented by specific Guidelines on the progressive restoration of transport services and connectivity.
LGBT workers still suffer from discrimination in the world of work and in the society due to their sexual orientation.
In times of Covid, as in other crises, these rights are even more under threat, due to lack of legislative protection and underrepresentation in workplaces and society in general.
Economic and social policies to date have focused excessively on fiscal discipline rather than on public investment in health and care, this crisis clearly showing that this was to the detriment of the people in general. This fiscal discipline focused on austerity, cuts and privatisation; as a result, aging was seen as a cost on the country’s budget and financing of the health sector dwindled. ETUC has been denouncing the weakness of the health care systems in Europe for many years.
The ETUC Women’s Committee stands beside women from across Europe who are fighting to fulfil their rights to safe, legal and fully comprehensive reproductive healthcare.
The ETUC Women’s Committee particularly supports Polish women who are protesting against a bill, submitted through the citizens’ initiative which aims to introduce a full ban on abortion. The bill is currently being discussed in the Polish Parliament.
Trade Unions are always here continuing to fight for…
This year we celebrate a Labour Day out of the norm. Generally, thousands of workers would have taken to the streets to celebrate this day, but, this year, this will not be possible due to the current COVID-19 crisis.
28/04/2020 : Letter to the European Commission on the Youth Guarantee
Dear President von der Leyen,
Dear Commissioner Schmit,
In recent weeks every aspect of our life as we know it has been turned around. The European Union is once again under scrutiny and we are under strong pressure to demonstrate to the citizens that it can offer strategies on how to overcome the consequences of the pandemic.
The ETUC to make access of companies to EU and national public funding during and after the COVID-19 outbreak conditional to the respect of tax obligations and workers’ rights
Member States are providing direct public support to companies facing the COVID-19 outbreak. The European Union has pledged many different financial instruments to assist the Member States in their action to support economic activities of companies and provide income replacement to workers.
The COVID-19 outbreak has shown us how vulnerable we are to an epidemic, and how devastating the effects can be: on life, on health, on society, on our economy.
It has demonstrated very clearly the importance of protecting working people (and all people) from disease, especially at the workplace.
STATEMENT SIGNED BY ETUC AND 50+ CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANISATIONS
Democracy – Inclusion – Justice – Solidarity – Sustainability
The COVID-19 pandemic is demonstrating all too well that unequal societies go hand-in-hand with human suffering, fragile economies and delicate democracies.
Migrant workers in Europe are on the frontline of the response to the COVID-19 crisis. Now more than ever, the crucial contribution of migrant workers to support European economies, public services and fill labour shortages is crystal clear. These workers are to be found in those sectors most hit by the crisis agriculture, domestic and care work, public healthcare at all levels, food industry, construction, tourism, transport) putting their lives at risk for the sake of all of us. Their work is essential; however, they are the forgotten ones.
Brussels, 15 April 2020
To Executive Committee
To Economic Committee
For information to ETUC Member Organisations
Please see attached the ETUC position on International corporate taxation - A European view adopted at the last Executive Committee meeting on 09-10 March.
With best regards,
Less than one month after the start of lockdowns in many EU countries due to COVID-19 outbreak, the number of additional unemployed workers has crossed 4 million, with hundreds of thousands of companies closed and many unlikely to survive the emergency.
At the same time, measures to support companies facing difficulties and to provide workers suspended from work with short-time work arrangements and income compensation have been put in place in most Member States, making it possible to save millions of jobs.
On 30 March 2020 the European Commission published Guidelines on the exercise of the free movement of workers in view of the COVID-19 outbreak and the border restrictions that have been put in place by Member States. The aim of these Guidelines is to ensure that mobile workers, such as frontier, posted and seasonal workers within the EU, will be able to reach their workplace also in cross-border situations between Member States, in particular workers in critical occupations.
European Social Partners' letter to the attention of Mrs Ursula Von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, Mr Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice-President, Valdis Dombrovskis, Executive Vice-President, Nicolas Schmit, Commissioner on the situation in Poland
The ETUC sent tow letters to Hugarian Prime Minister Orban and to European Commission President Von Der Leyen about the legislation passed in Hungary on 31 March.
Letter to Prime Minister of Hungary
Letter to President of the European Commission
Brussels, 30 March 2020
To Executive Committee
For information to ETUC Member Organisations
Please see attached the position paper on the 2020 European Semester - Autumn Package adopted at the Extraordinary Executive Committee on 9-10 March 2020.
Letter sent to: Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission; Charles Michel, President of the European Council; Prime Ministers/Head of State; David Sassoli, President European Parliament; Andrej Plenković, President of the Government of the Republic of Croatia; Mario Centeno, President of the Eurogroup; Christine Lagarde, President European Central Bank
Concerns: Emergency measures to save jobs and protect workers’ rights in the European Union
Dear Presidents, Dear Prime Ministers, Dear Head of State,
Dear Prime Minister, Dear Minister,
The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) has been informed by its Croatian affiliates, SSSH and NHS, that the Croatian Ministry of Labour and Pension System is drafting an Act on regulating labour relations in the circumstances of the COVID-19 epidemic and by which bring some important changes to fundamental social rights as they are currently enshrined in the Croatian Labour Code.
The law would amongst others “temporarily”:
Respect for human rights and fundamental values should be guiding the Union in all its internal as well as external actions. In everyday life as well as in times of crises, the universality and indivisibility of human rights must be upheld to ensure human dignity at both global and local level.
The COVID-19 emergency is hitting working people in Europe hard.
Those who work in activities of general interest, such as health care, transportation, agriculture, food production, and many other services are exposed to contagion and are poorly protected. In many cases their working conditions have been worsened.