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28 April 2018 - World Day for Safety and Health at Work: ‘Union workplaces are safer workplaces’

This year on 28 April - the World Day for Safety and Health at Work – the union-selected global theme is ‘Union workplaces are safer workplaces’.

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Trade unions reiterate their support for the directive on work-life balance

The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) reiterated its support for the proposal for a European directive on work-life balance for parents and carers at an ETUI Monthly Forum on 17 April. The main results of a comparative study of the systems already in place in the Member States, which the ETUI had requested from the European Social Observatory, were presented at the Forum.

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2019 ETUC Brian Bercusson Award on European labour law

Brian Bercusson Award

The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) has instituted an award to honour the outstanding and dynamic scientific work, of great value to the European trade union movement, of the late labour law Professor Brian Bercusson: the ETUC Brian Bercusson Award.

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Collective Bargaining March 2018

Find below the highlights of the latest issue of the Collective Bargaining newsletter with the most important developments at European and member state level over the month of March.

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Working less for the same pay: Czech unions demand it, employers are not against it.

working time

Czech workers want to work less, but for the same wage. The Czech union CMKOS wants to put forward a demand for a collective working time reduction to 7.5 hours a day with a 30-minute break. According to them, this would mean a reduction of the working time by half an hour a day or 2.5 hours a week.

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IMF highlights absence of convergence in the Eurozone

Euro convergence

The economic convergence envisaged by the founders of the eurozone has not happened and Europe’s economies risk growing further apart unless a raft of reforms are implemented, the IMF’s Europe Director told an audience at the ETUI’s Monthly Forum on 22nd March. The IMF’s stance on the growing disparities in the eurozone echoes key findings of the ETUI’s Benchmarking Working Europe 2018 report released in the same week.

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Benchmarking Working Europe 2018: trade unions call for tangible progress on social issues before the next European elections

On 19 March 2018, a debate – organised by the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) and hosted by the Brussels-based Permanent Representation of Austria to the EU – was held to mark the publication of the 2018 Benchmarking Working Europe report. Organisations represented at this debate included the ETUI, the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), the European Commission and the European Parliament, and several speakers stressed the need to achieve tangible progress on social issues before the next European elections.

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Military Trade Unionism in Europe


EUROMIL, the European Organisation of Military Associations, together with the ETUI, organised a lunch debate on “Military Trade Unionism in Europe” on 21 March 2018. Peter Scherrer, ETUC Deputy General Secretary, opened the debate by stating that the right of workers to have their voices heard, the right to form and join trade unions is a fundamental right. One important group of workers however is often forgotten and still today in many countries struggles to have its rights respected: the military personnel.

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Modest increases in minimum wages in the European Union

In early 2018, the legal minimum wage experienced a median increase of 4.4% in the EU Member States. Taking into account inflation, this increase is limited to 2.8%. These figures are taken from a report by the Institute of Economic and Social Research (WSI) of the Hans-Böckler Foundation, an organization accountable to the German trade union movement. The report is based on the WSI Minimum Wage Database which offers a comprehensive analysis of current minimum wage developments in Europe and beyond.

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EU: income convergence and inequality

Research on economic integration and convergence reveals that the financial and economic crisis has had a huge impact on the existing EU-wide inequality. Growth in household incomes and convergence up until 2008 was followed by years of stagnation. As a consequence, the wage gap between western Europe and the new EU Central and Eastern European Member States persisted. The ETUC stated that it is necessary to keep the EU economic policy-making moving in a more progressive direction.

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