Employment Policy in the EU
Latest news on employment policy in the European Union.
- Doing business in Poland: Staff welfare — 03 April 2012, 12:04 CET
This guide outlines the social rules in Poland and the legislation that regulates workers' rights and employers' obligations.
- Doing business in Austria: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:49 CET
This guide gives brief information on the legislation which directs social rules in the workplace in Austria.
- Doing business in Finland: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:50 CET
The Ministry of Employment and the Economy's Strategy and Foresight Unit coordinates equality and equal opportunities matters in Finland, as well as the Ministry's sustainable development policy.
- Doing business in Denmark: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:50 CET
This guide summarizes the Danish legislation responsible for ensuring staff welfare.
- Doing business in the Netherlands: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:48 CET
In the Netherlands, government rules on staff welfare can be found in the Working Conditions Act, the Working Conditions Decree, the government's Health and Safety Regulations and also its Guidelines on Working Conditions, including standards.
- Doing business in Italy: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:49 CET
This guide summarizes the main rules that regulate employers' social obligations to their workers.
- Doing business in France: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:49 CET
France's labour code sets out employees' rights in relation to non-discrimination, gender equality in the workplace, health, maternity and paternity leave, harassment, etc.
- — 05 March 2012, 13:53 CET
The average difference between men's and women's hourly earnings is known as the gender pay gap.
The gender pay gap reflects ongoing discrimination and inequalities in the labour market which, in practice, mainly affect women. Its causes are complex and interrelated. Visit these pages to understand why the gap exists and learn more about the EU's work to close it.
- Doing business in Germany: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:49 CET
Social support in Germany is handled via the individual branches of social security: statutory medical, healthcare, pension, unemployment and accident insurance. The legal basis is provided by the Social Security Code (Sozialgesetzbuch) and the specific Acts.
- Doing business in Belgium: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:48 CET
Social legislation in Belgium prohibits discrimination and advocates equal opportunity and gender equality. Employers are responsible for promoting welfare within the company.
- Doing business in the UK: Staff welfare — 30 March 2012, 00:48 CET
Labour legislation covers basic workplace standards which employers must follow. These include protection against discrimination, the right to equal pay and the national minimum wage.
- Commission White Paper on pensions - guide — 16 February 2012, 20:06 CET
The European Commission as today issued a White paper on pensions. It puts forward policy initiatives to support Member States in the reform of their pension systems. The measures proposed by the White Paper aim to help people who are able to work longer and save more for their retirement. They aim to raise the average age at which people retire, reflecting the rising life expectancy, to encourage complementary private retirement savings and protect them, including when people change jobs and have to switch to other occupational pension schemes.
- Modernisation of the Professional Qualifications Directive - guide — 19 December 2011, 20:00 CET
As the working age population in many Member States shrinks, demand for highly skilled people between now and 2020 is projected to rise by over 16 million jobs. If Europe is to meet this demand, gaps in labour shortages need to be filled – for example through mobile and well qualified professionals from other EU Member States. They can be a key source of growth, but only if they can easily go to where jobs are and this requires their qualifications in the EU to be recognised in a fast, simple and reliable way. That is why the European Commission has adopted a proposal for modernising the Professional Qualifications Directive (Directive 2005/36/EC). The proposal aims at simplifying rules for the mobility of professionals within the EU by offering a European Professional Card to all interested professions which would allow easier and faster recognition of qualifications. It also clarifies the framework for consumers, by inviting Member States to review the scope of their regulated professions and by addressing public concerns about language skills and the lack of effective alerts about professional malpractice, notably in the health sector.
- Commission report on transitional arrangements regarding free movement of workers from Bulgaria and Romania — 14 November 2011, 15:48 CET
A new report published today by the European Commission highlights the overall positive role that mobile workers from Bulgaria and Romania (EU-2) have played in receiving countries' economies.
- Cohesion: legislative package of EU regional, employment and social policy for 2014-2020 - guide — 06 October 2011, 14:16 CET
Cohesion policy is implemented through programmes which run for the duration of the EU seven-year budget cycle. The current 455 programmes are foreseen until 2013. This is why it is necessary to define the architecture of the policy for the new generation of programmes and allocations for 2014-20. Today’s legislative package includes an overarching regulation setting out common rules governing the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the European Social Fund (ESF), the Cohesion Fund, the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF). One set of rules instead of 5. Three specific regulations for the ERDF, the ESF and the Cohesion Fund will also be included, as well as two regulations dealing with the European territorial cooperation goal and the European grouping of territorial cooperation (EGTC). The Commission also adopted proposals for two instruments in the area of employment and social policy, namely the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) and the Programme for Social Change and Innovation (PSCI), as well as a communication on the European Union Solidarity Fund (EUSF).
- EU aims to train 700,000 legal professionals in EU law by 2020 — 14 September 2011, 20:24 CET
The European Commission has set a clear target for increasing the numbers of judges, prosecutors, lawyers and other legal practitioners trained in European law.
- 2010 report on European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) - guide — 23 August 2011, 22:41 CET
Nearly 23,700 workers dismissed due to economic crisis and major structural changes in world trade patterns were helped by the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) last year, according to a report adopted on 22 August by the European Commission – more than double the number of workers helped by the Fund in 2009. The EUR 83.5 million paid out by the EU's Globalisation Fund to nine Member States are intended to help the national authorities as they support dismissed workers in finding new job opportunities.
- Proposal to modify Council Regulation (EEC) No 3821/85 on tachographs - guide — 20 July 2011, 17:08 CET
The European Commission has proposed to revise the tachograph legislation to make full use of new technological opportunities such as satellite positioning. This will make fraud more difficult and reduce the administrative burden, which is expected to save companies €515 million per year. By ensuring better compliance with rules on driving times and rest periods, drivers will be better protected, road safety increased and fair competition assured.
- Green Paper on the modernisation of the Professional Qualifications Directive - guide — 23 June 2011, 00:25 CET
In consultation with stakeholders, the European Commission is seeking to modernise the Professional Qualifications Directive (Directive 2005/36/EC).
- End of transitional arrangements for the free movement of workers on 30 April 2011 - guide — 29 April 2011, 23:46 CET
May 1st 2011 marks the removal of restrictions on the right to work in any Member State for citizens from the Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Poland, Slovenia and Slovakia. All workers from the countries that joined the EU in 2004 will now be able to take up employment freely in those Member States where labour market restrictions have been in place until the very end of the seven year transitional period ending April 30th 2011. The Commission does not expect huge flows of workers from the EU-8 countries as many wanting to move to work in an EU-15 Member State have already done so. Experience and studies show that the impact of any future mobility is likely to be positive, contributing to economic growth and filling existing labour market shortages.
- — 16 January 2013, 20:19 CET
ESF funding is available through the Member States and regions. The ESF does not fund projects directly from Brussels.
Each Member State, together with the European Commission, agrees on one or more Operational Programmes for ESF funding for the 2007-2013 period, as do those regions that have their own Operational Programmes (not all do). Operational Programmes set the priorities for ESF intervention and their objectives.
The Operational Programmes are implemented through individual projects run by participating organisations (known as ‘beneficiaries’). A beneficiary designs a project, applies for funding and, if this is granted, implements the project.
- — 16 January 2013, 20:29 CET
Are you considering applying for European Union funding? Do you want to see examples of projects that have received financial support from the EU? The European Commission's Directorate General for Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion is responsible for a number of funding instruments, including the European Social Fund (ESF).
- Corporate governance framework for European companies - EC consultation — 05 April 2011, 17:46 CET
One of the lessons of the financial crisis is that corporate governance, until now usually based on self-regulation, was not as effective as it could have been. It is important that companies are better run. If companies are better run, not only is a future crisis less likely but they should also be more competitive. The European Commission has launched today a public consultation that addresses the ways in which corporate governance of European companies can be improved. Corporate governance is traditionally defined as the system by which companies are managed and controlled. The consultation covers a number of issues such as how to improve the diversity and functioning of the boards of directors and the monitoring and enforcement of existing national corporate governance codes, and how to enhance the engagement of shareholders. The deadline for submitting contributions in response to the consultation is 22 July 2011.
- Annual report on the application of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights - guide — 31 March 2011, 17:00 CET
The EU Charter of Fundamental Rights has now been legally binding for over a year – primarily on the EU institutions (European Parliament, Council and the European Commission) when preparing new European laws, but also on national authorities if they are implementing EU law. As part of its efforts to make fundamental rights a reality for citizens in the EU, the European Commission is reporting for the first time on how the Charter is being applied. The Annual Report on the application of the Charter shows that fundamental rights are relevant across a wide range of policies – from data protection to immigration and asylum – and that public interest in the Charter runs high. However, the report also highlights that the Charter is frequently misunderstood. In 2010, the Commission received more than 4,000 letters from the general public regarding fundamental rights. Approximately three quarters of these concerned cases outside the remit of EU law. In addition, a recent survey by the European Ombudsman found that 72% of Europeans do not feel well informed about the Charter. Today's report is a first step in addressing these challenges, clarifying where the Charter applies and where it does not. This will ease citizens' access to justice. The report should help citizens determine where they need to turn when they believe that their fundamental rights have been violated by an EU institution or a national authority. The Annual Report is therefore part of the Commission's strategy to ensure that fundamental rights are effectively implemented so that people can rely on them in practice.
- — 17 March 2011, 22:44 CET
Some 10-12 million Roma and Travellers are currently living in the European Union. Almost all of the Roma and Travellers living in the European Union are EU citizens and have the same rights as any other EU citizen. The Roma make up the largest ethnic minority in the EU. Minorities have a specific mention in the Treaty of Lisbon and the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. Evidence has shown that they are more likely to face discrimination and social exclusion than majority populations. Some of the key findings of the Fundamental Rights Agency's research on the situation of Roma and Travellers in the EU are listed here.