The European Pillar of Social Rights - a basis for upward social convergence?

On 8 March 2016, the European Commission presented its communication for a public consultation on the European Pillar of Social Rights which is accompanied by an outline of the Pillar as well as two staff working documents: one on key economic, labour market and societal trends and one on the EU social acquis. The process of building the Pillar is part of the ongoing “Deepening the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU)”.

Since then SOLIDAR has been at the forefront to contribute to the process calling for the Pillar to ensure social safeguards for everyone living in the EU. Here you can find the final report as voted on Thursday 19 January 2017 in Strasbourg. Over the past months SOLIDAR has expressed very strongly their recommendations in a variety of occasions and settings (such as the EESC opinion) and is therefore content to see that those recommendations have found their way into the final report, which allows for a promising next step, namely the white book consultation.

SOLIDAR is keen on seeing that the report states that the pillar should focus on;

  • upward social-convergence across the whole EU;
  • that is should comprise updated labour and social standards;
  • that it should call for a re-evaluation of the national minimum income schemes;
  • that compulsory secondary education and  a skills guarantee should be ensured;
  • that is should ensure a Child Guarantee;
  • that the EU’s economic governance should be rebalanced with targets set according to the Europe 2020 strategy and the Sustainable Development Goals;
  • that the European Social Funds, the Youth Employment Initiative, the Globalisation Adjustment Fund and the Fund for European Aid to the most deprived should be strengthened;
  • And lastly, the need for adequate financing to ease economic adjustment processes.

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