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EU misses huge opportunity to push its values into globalization by neglecting the design of a statutory framework for Workers’ Voice in multinational Companies


Social Europe & Jobs

Recent research by the Hans Böckler Foundation in Germany shows that engaging Workers’ Voice in the governance of multinational companies have a significant positive effect in transmitting European values in the process of globalization.

In the initiative “Global Deal” in a global partnership workers representatives and the management of multinational companies join forces to address the challenges in the global labour market and enabling all people to benefit from globalization. The Global Deal is a multi-stakeholder partnership in line with Goal 17 (“partnerships for the goals”) in the UN 2030 Agenda for sustainable development. It is also a concrete input to several of the other goals, not least goal 8 on decent work and inclusive growth and goal 10 on inequalities.

Hans Böckler Foundation has decided to more actively communicate the potentials of Workers’ Voice in Brussels as well as in the European capitals in order to increase the awareness of these potentials in the design of the European policy agenda in this so important phase for the European Union to come.

In its first event on the 2nd of October in Brussels Albert Kruft, Chairman of the Central Works Council Solvay Germany; Secretary of the European Works Council Solvay; Coordinator of the Solvay Global Forum (partner of the “Global Deal”) and member of an international expert group on employee participation in Europe stressed:

“Companies have to be transparent in what they are doing and how they treat employees. This will lead in a deep social dialogue with employee representatives and unions. To secure this we need social framework agreements. Such agreements are the key for an intensive social dialogue at all levels and will create trust by the employees. To get the power to do that, Europe has to set up statutory framework for Workers‘ Voice.”

The Hans Böckler Foundation deals with Co-determination, research linked to the world of work and the support of students on behalf of the DGB, the Confederation of German Trade Unions.

Co-determination in Germany defines a set of rights that give employees the possibility of actively participating in the shaping of their working environment. This includes legally stipulated Co-determination rights, company-internal agreements devised in conjunction with union contracts as well as informal determination possibilities that have arisen from Co-determination practice.

Mr. Kruft´s statement on video:

Background information on Workers´ Voice and the Global Deal (english) and the Workers´ Voice expert group: