Joint position of sectoral federations of employers regarding the review of the European sectoral social dialogue

Publikováno: 13. 5. 2009

Extraordinary Liaison Forum meeting of 27th April 2009
1. The autonomy of the social partners is essential for a well-functioning sectoral social dialogue. Therefore, and as laid down in the Treaty, the Commission must remain a neutral actor and its role strictly one of support (providing logistic facilities, experts and expertise). 2. The principle of subsidiarity needs to be respected. As many issues are dealt with at national level only, the scope of European social dialogue will be defined by the mandate given to the European social partners. This should not be confused with a lack of commitment. 3. The content of sectoral social dialogue and the form and nature of its outcomes (typology of the results) must be agreed between the social partners alone. As an example, multi-sectoral initiatives, such as the one on respirable crystalline silica, should be taken on a case-by-case basis according to the needs identified by the social partners concerned and the goals they set, e.g. improving cooperation or gathering best practices. 4. Social dialogue is the exclusive domain of social partners – civil dialogue must remain separate. The categorisation of social partners must be avoided. It should be left to the sectoral social partners to decide whether or not to include new organisations in their social dialogue committees. 5. A standardization/classification of sectoral social dialogue committees is unacceptable and must be avoided, since each committee reflects the specificities of its sector. 6. Reporting/assessment of the joint outcomes of the sectoral social dialogue must remain voluntary and left up to the decision of the social partners. 7. The functioning of sectoral social dialogue cannot be assessed by only considering elements such as the typology of results, length of existence or the quantitative data on participation. Any "ranking" of European social dialogue committees must be avoided. 8. No systematic link should be made between sectoral social dialogue and European Works Councils. 9. The Commission should improve the quality of information regarding European social dialogue and its dissemination (Liaison Forum, Commission's website, news bulletins, mailings etc), offering the possibility of achieving a better coordination between the activities of different social dialogue Committees (including cross-industry level). 10. The Commission must improve information to, and consultation of, social partners on sectoral and cross-industry policies. The results of social partner consultations should automatically be made available to social partners in due time. 11. The exchange of information between DG Employment and other Directorates General on social dialogue needs to be improved, a culture of inter-service cooperation between all Directorates General concerned should be developed, awareness about European Social Dialogue needs to be raised and a systematic involvement of social partners in impact assessments should be achieved. 12. The Commission should simplify access for sectoral social partners to EU-funding (reducing bureaucracy –possibly through harmonised financial management and reporting between all programmes and based on standard accounting and reporting rules-, better information, training when relevant etc.).
Autor: Hanka Michovska



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