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European Parliament endorses mandatory anti-harassment training for all MEPs

Date

24 Apr 2024

Sections

InfoSociety

Today the European Parliament endorsed new rules on mandatory anti-harassment training for all its Members. 

As a result of the reforms led by S&D vice-president Gaby Bischoff, MEPs will have to follow training sessions on the prevention of conflict and harassment, as well as on good office management, within the first six months in. Today the conservative forces in the European Parliament, led by the European People’s Party, watered down the text adopted by the constitutional affairs committee that made it possible to remove an elected officeholder, such as president, vice-president, quaestor, committee chair or vice-chair. 

In January 2023, Parliament’s leaders mandated the committee to strengthen the institution’s anti-harassment rules. The new rules on mandatory anti-harassment training are among the final votes of this mandate, after delays orchestrated by the right wing political groups in the European Parliament.

S&D vice-president Gaby Bischoff, leading the negotiations for mandatory harassment training for the constitutional affairs committee, said:

“As a public institution as well as an employer, the European Parliament has a duty to set the gold standard in tackling harassment in the workplace. Clear rules and strong sanctions must be in place to support a zero-tolerance approach towards inappropriate behaviour. Prevention is key as it enables us to address issues proactively, before they escalate. Mandatory training reinforces our commitment to a workplace where the dignity of all is respected and protected.

“Despite a clear political mandate from Parliament’s Bureau, conservative and far-right political groups water down the new rules in particular with regards to sanctions in cases of breaches. The European People’s Party, in particular, has resorted to delaying tactics, prolonging negotiations within the committee and casting doubt on the need to change the rules of procedure. Why EPP Members have dragged their feet on mandatory training to prevent harassment in the European Parliament is for them to explain.”

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