As announced in a previous article, on the 21 September 2017, the European Commission engaged the second round of consultations of social partners on a possible review of Directive 91/533/CEE (regarding the obligation to inform workers on employment conditions), within the scope of implementing the European Pillar of social rights. This document is accessible here.
As the Commission notes, “there is a growing challenge to define and apply appropriate rights for many workers in new and non-standard forms of employment relationships. Such forms of work are creating opportunities for people to enter or remain in the labour market and the flexibility they offer can be a matter of personal choice. However, inadequate regulation means that many people in work are stuck in legal loopholes, which may make them subject to unclear or unfair practices and make it difficult to enforce their rights.”
Consequently, the Commission intends:
— “Ensuring all workers get the right set of information about their working conditions in a written form and in a timely manner;
— Providing all workers with a number of new minimum rights aimed at reducing precariousness in employment relationships and achieving upward convergence across Member States.”
The Commission is also analysing the replies received from social partners during the first round of consultation. Six union federations, including ETUC and EAEA, replied, as well as thirteen employer organisations, with the union organisations showing a more open approach to the process proposed by the Commission than did employer organisations.
The Commission is considering four types of possible measures:
— Extending the directive’s field of application to cover all EU workers;
— Extending the right to be informed on applicable employment conditions;
— Establishing new minimum rights to reduce precariousness in work relationships;
— Improve legal remedies and sanctions to force employers to apply the law.
The Commission may suspend its work if, within a period of six weeks, social partners communicate their decision to undertake negotiations on a European scale.
FIM and its EAEA partners are preparing their reply to this consultation.