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Report: steering labour migration policies into the right lane

The face of European labour migration has changed quite radically over the last decades and needs a new policy approach on the part of national and European authorities, according to a new report presented by the Dutch Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR) this week.

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ILO warns of “race to the bottom” in wages

Guy Ryder ILO

Workers’ wages in the developed economies have grown more slowly than labour productivity according to the new Global Wage Report 2012-13 of the International Labour Organisation (ILO). “Workers and their families are not receiving the fair share they deserve,” said ILO’s director-general Guy Ryder.

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Discounting the workers: conditions in the retail sector

This 6th issue of the HesaMag looks at working conditions in the retail sector, with a special focus on employees in the mainly grocery store. The supermarket boom has given jobs to hundreds of thousands of Europeans, very many of them young people. This foothold in the working world, however, can now only be had by giving up some expectations about well-being at work, and even a home life.

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Youth unemployment: EU Commission to the rescue?


With more than 5.5 million young people unemployed in the EU, the European Commission has proposed that member states introduce a “youth guarantee” scheme to help young adults get a job. The proposal is one element of the Youth Employment Package presented by Employment Commissioner László Andor on 5 December.

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Eurocrisis: calls for alternative policies and democratic debate get louder


Last week, the European Commission presented its Annual Growth Survey for 2013 and a “Blueprint” for a future “deep and genuine Economic Monetary Union”. The analysis presented in the survey confirms that the EU’s executive body remains addicted to its flawed neo-liberal recipes to tackle the Eurocrisis. But critiques of the EU’s austerity policies are growing and new voices for a more social alternative are getting louder.

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Basic services sectors: more jobs yes, but better?


Creating more and at the same time better jobs is one of the key objectives of the EU’s Europe 2020 strategy. The European research project WALQING investigated quality of work in five growing but socially risk-prone service sectors and presented its conclusions and recommendation at the ETUI’s November Monthly Forum on 26 November.

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Bangladesh fire puts subcontracting and textile dependence on the line

112 workers - many of them women – perished in a fire in a Bangladesh clothing factory in the evening of 24 November. This latest tragic event at a subcontractor of major Western clothing brands casts doubt on whether any real improvement in safety and working conditions is possible in a country whose economic engine is an industry riddled by cut-price labour conditions.

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REACH: five years on, is it delivering?

REACH, the European chemicals regulation, started being implemented in June 2007. Five years on, ETUI chemical hazards expert Tony Musu takes stock of this ambitious reform. The former European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) management board member gives his outspoken views on ECHA independence and the impact of industry lobbying, and talks about other crucial issues for workers' health like exposure to nanomaterials and carcinogens.

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New economists’ network for social and ecological alternative to EU austerity

A new European Progressive Economist Network was launched at the Firenze 10+10 forum meeting earlier this month. The objective of the network is to formulate a real alternative economic policy to replace the current neo-liberal austerity narrative.

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Time for a makeover for EU takeovers

The latest issue of the ETUI’s Worker Participation news bulletin was published on 19 November. The editorial lead article written by the Institute’s associate researcher Sigurt Vitols takes a critical look at the European Union’s legislation on company takeovers and finds it lacking in terms of worker involvement rights during the takeover process.

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