Social Policy : Commission Opens Online Consultation on Labour Law

European Social Policy, December 11, 2006 | Go to article overview

Social Policy : Commission Opens Online Consultation on Labour Law


The European Commission, on 22 November, launched a widespread open public debate on the revision and adaptation of labour law to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

New types of contractual arrangements, different from permanent, full-time work are becoming increasingly common across the EU. For Vladimir pidla, the Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, "these more flexible arrangements are vital to confronting the effects of globalisation and demographic ageing in our labour markets. At the same time, it is essential that workers do not lose out in this process and that their call for greater security is heard. We want an open debate on how labour law could be adapted both at EU and national levels to reflect the new reality of work in Europe."

Rapid technological progress as well as globalisation have fundamentally changed European labour markets, explained the Commission. Fixed-term contracts, part-time work, on-call and zero-hour contracts, hiring through temporary employment agencies and freelance contracts have become an established feature of the European labour market, accounting for 25% of the workforce.At the same time, there is a growing gap between those looking for work, those in non-standard, sometimes precarious contractual arrangements on the one hand (so-called outsiders'), and those in permanent, full-time jobs on the other (the insiders'). …

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Social Policy : Commission Opens Online Consultation on Labour Law
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