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26 June 2013

Restructurings: Commission stops short at a Communication

The European Commission has told the European Parliament (EP) that it planned to put out a “Communication on a quality framework” to regulate restructurings. The EP’s call for a binding measure has therefore been kicked into touch.

“This Communication would frame the current EU legislation and initiatives in this field and it would present the best practices to be implemented by all stakeholders,” the executive explains. To avoid shutting the EP out altogether, the Commission will keep under review the need to revise the proposed quality framework and will keep the European Parliament informed within a given deadline. This review might prepare the ground for a future legislative proposal.

To justify its decision, the Commission explains that consulting the European social partners would never lead to an agreement. Likewise, a draft directive would never thrive within the European Council.

On 15 January 2013, the European Parliament had adopted a resolution which urged the EU Commission to propose legislation on socially responsible restructurings in companies. The text called for a European framework applying to major restructurings of enterprises and groups of enterprises (private and public) that affect a large number of workers or a large percentage of personnel over a limited period of time.

In early June, the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) released the results of a survey showing that 72% of European workers see job insecurity and restructuring as the main stressors at work. (Source: Planet Labor, 18 June 2013)

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