ETUC Demonstation for Peace&Dialogue, Brussels, 24/02/2022
Speech by Luca Visentini, ETUC General Secretary
"We face a tragedy, war is back to Europe with its worst face after decades.
We condemn the Russian aggression against Ukrainian people and ask EU leaders gathering this evening to put in place all the measures needed to stop military operations and come back to dialogue for peace.
Joint ETUC-ITUC statement on Ukraine
The ETUC and ITUC condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and demand that all Russian forces leave Ukraine immediately.
The attack on Ukraine is a flagrant violation of international law and of Ukraine’s territorial integrity as a sovereign and democratic state.
Luca Visentini, General Secretary of the ETUC and of the ITUC Pan-European Regional Council said:
ETUC Demonstation for Peace&Dialogue, Brussels, 24/02/2022
Speech by Esther Lynch, ETUC Deputy General Secretary
"Trade unions are always and everywhere against war
We condemn the attacks on Ukraine.
War is never in the interest of working people.
Trade unions are always and everywhere
For peace and dialogue
For peace and democracy
For peace and justice
Today the European Commission restated its commitment to decent work worldwide, to abolition of child labour and forced labour, set out the various already-existing tools that could be used to achieve it, and proposed an ‘instrument’ to ban products in EU made from forced labour.
Liina Carr, ETUC Confederal Secretary said “The EU must adopt a ban on products from forced labour. To fail to do so now would be a disgrace.
The European Commission today finally proposed draft legislation on Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence. Despite some interesting features, it falls far short of what is needed to protect human rights and the environment.
It particularly falls short on the concrete involvement of workers and trade unions in shaping and monitoring sustainable business due diligence strategies, aimed at preventing or ceasing adverse impacts on human rights and the environment.
European trade unions are calling on the European Commission to take seriously its responsibility to ensure Africa finally receives a fair share of Covid-19 vaccines by supporting the patent waiver called for again today by African leaders as an important step towards creating a more equal partnership.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said at today’s EU-African Union summit that “governments that are really serious about ensuring that the world has access to vaccines should ensure that we approve the TRIPS waiver.”
The call comes at a time when:
The European Parliament has voted in favour of fair pay for trainees and apprentices, piling pressure on the European Commission to take action during its European Year of Youth.
MEPs voted overwhelmingly in favour of a resolution which called on the Commission to “propose a common legal framework to ensure fair remuneration for traineeships and apprenticeships in order to avoid exploitative practices” following a campaign by the ETUC Youth Committee.
Dear Members of the European Parliament,
Europe is fighting another round of deadly pandemic while the consequences of the previous waves are taking a high toll on our citizens. The inflation paired with the slow (if any) increase in wages is driving social inequalities to extremes.
Europe’s biggest platform companies will fail the majority of the five tests laid down by the EU to determine whether their staff are genuinely self-employed, an analysis by the ETUC has found.
The platform work directive published by the European Commission in December includes a list of criteria which will be used to determine if an employment relationship exists between workers and a company. If a company meets at least two of the five criteria, they will be considered an employer.
Following the recent passing of Carlo Parietti, a former President of Eurocadres and a CGIL trade union leader, Luca Visentini, General Secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), has sent a message of condolences to Maurizio Landini, CGIL General Secretary:
Personally, and also on behalf of the ETUC, please accept my deepest condolences for the sad death of Carlo Parietti.
Two thirds of European workers would be excluded from pay transparency measures under the proposals made by the European Commission, its own data reveals.
Binding pay transparency measures were one of the flagship policy promises of the von der Leyen Commission and, after a 460-day delay, it finally published a draft gender pay transparency directive last spring. But the impact of the directive risks falling far short of its promise because of the Commission’s decision to limit gender pay reporting to organisations with over 250 staff.
We are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of David Sassoli, President of the European Parliament.
David Sassoli was a true defender of European values and democracy, and fought for a fairer and more united Europe.
He was a kind and caring man, an outstanding progressive leader, a supporter of Social Europe and a friend of workers and trade unions. He will be missed very much.
The deepest condolences of the European Trade Union Confederation to his family and loved ones.
The European Commission has today proposed measures on raising new own resources and fair corporate taxation.
Responding to the proposals, ETUC Confederal Secretary Liina Carr said:
“The recovery fund is one of the EU’s biggest success stories in recent decades, moving Europe away from growth-killing austerity towards the public investment needed for a strong and fair recovery that creates high quality jobs. New own resources are vital to allow Europe to maintain this investment.
Workers could have covered the cost of Christmas with a little left over for the new year if wages had kept pace with productivity growth over the last two years, research for the ETUC has found.
European workers would have collectively received 116 billion Euro more since 2019 if productivity increases had been translated into commensurately higher wages as is meant to be the case.
That works out at an average of €649.30 extra for every worker, which is more than the average amount Europeans spend on gifts, food, socialising and travel at Christmas (419.48 Euro).
Trade unions are calling on EU governments to support long overdue improvements to social security coordination needed to protect the rights of some of Europe’s most vulnerable workers.
After 17 rounds of negotiations between the European Parliament and the European Council, an agreement on a revision of the EU regulation on the coordination of social security systems was finally found last Thursday.
The agreement would ensure improvements on the following issues:
Context – The European Commission today published its proposal for a Council Recommendation aiming at ensuring that the Union’s transition towards a climate-neutral and environmentally sustainable economy by 2050 is fair and leaves nobody behind, in line with the European pillar of Social Rights. The proposal invites Member States to adopt and implement comprehensive and coherent policy packages to address the employment and social aspects to promote a fair transition.
Against the backdrop of post-Covid shortages of both skilled and unskilled workers around Europe – from Croatia to Sweden - trade unions and employers in many countries are taking steps to equip workers for digital and environmentally sustainable workplaces. In this edition of National Updates we look at some of these initiatives, as well as steps to ease labour market access for older and younger workers.
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