S&Ds welcome Council’s general position on workers’ rights. More needs to be done to ensure fairer conditions for European workers

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Social Europe & Jobs
Following the adoption of general approaches on transparent and predictable working conditions, work-life balance and the co-ordination of social security systems in Europe, S&D Group spokesperson on employment and social affairs, MEP Agnes Jongerius, stated:
 
"We welcome the common positions on better working conditions for all, including workers in vulnerable positions, adopted today by the employment and social policy Council. This is the step in the right direction, however it is a shame that the most fundamental question, namely to whom the rights and duties in this directive apply, is being left to the member states.
 
"We also regret the low level of the member states' ambition on the work-life balance directive. Their position is much weaker than the original proposal of the European Commission. The level of payment of the leaves for parents, fathers and carers cannot be defined by the member states if we want to achieve progress in this area. We need stronger incentives to encourage men to be more involved in caring responsibilities and improve women's participation in the labour market in order to achieve genuine gender equality.
 
"Finally, we welcome that the Council also finalised their long discussions on the co-ordination of social security systems. We are looking forward to starting negotiations soon. It is essential to finalise these three important files before the end of the legislature. We expect the member states to be constructive and open in the discussions with the European Parliament and to deliver on their commitments in the framework of the European Pillar of Social Rights."