Responding to the European Commission's European Semester Winter Package, ETUC General Secretary Luca Visentini said:
“The Commission recognises that wage inequalities are increasing and life is getting tougher for low-wage workers, underlining the urgent need for higher statutory minimum wages where they exist and measures to promote collective bargaining in every member state.
“We welcome the commitment to taking a flexible approach to fiscal targets in light of the developments in the Coronavirus outbreak. We need member states and the EU to take the economic measures needed to stop this public health emergency turning into a recession."
Liina Carr, ETUC Confederal Secretary added:
“But the Commission’s continued emphasis on cuts to achieve debt reduction is wrong, especially when the reports state that the level of public investment remains below pre-crisis levels. All member states need higher levels of public investment to trigger the economic growth needed for debt reduction, as well as creating jobs and raising living standards.
"The ETUC is ready to work with the Commission to guarantee a development model based on dignity of work, for growth that is compatible with environmental constraints and respectful of the limits of the Earth's natural resources.
“A requirement on member states to involve social partners at the milestones of the Semester Process at a national level would be the best way to ensure policies are implemented in a balanced and fair way.”