Under the leadership of MEP Dennis Radtke, the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL) of the European Parliament adopted yesterday a robust position on how to strengthen European Works Councils (EWCs). 

IndustriAll Europe welcomes this as a step in the right direction as our workers’ demands have been heard with provisions foreseeing:

  • quality and timely information and meaningful consultation on all transnational matters, before corporate decision are being made
  • quick reaction to breaches of EWC rights through the possibility of an injunction (temporary suspension of the management plan until the EWC has been properly informed and consulted)
  • genuinely deterrent sanctions and better access to justice for EWCs in each Member State
  • the possibility for EWCs to be assisted by competent experts, including trade union advisors

Isabelle Barthès, Deputy General Secretary of industriAll Europe says:

“EWCs are a key tool for anticipating and managing the many transformations our industries are confronted with. Without quality dialogue in companies, we will not be able to overcome the multiple crises we face and build a robust European industry that deliver quality jobs. Unfortunately, the current Directive does not deliver on the obligations it should. A stronger directive is urgently needed.

“We welcome yesterday’s vote at the European Parliament's Committee on Employment and Social Affairs as it aims at strengthening the EWC Directive. It is a very important step. The next steps will be equally crucial as trade unions turn also to the Council to insist on adopting clear measures to finally make EWC rights effective, enforceable and ultimately stronger.”