Platform work directive: socialist ministers to lead push for fair work

PES EPSCO ministers met online today

Government ministers from the Party of European Socialists (PES) will lead the push for an ambitious platform work directive, that is our political family’s commitment to Europe’s 28 million platform workers.

Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs (EPSCO) ministers from the PES convened online this morning to discuss the directive. The proposal – put forward by socialist European Commissioner Nicolas Schmit – will be a priority on the EPSCO Council’s agenda under the Spanish Presidency.

Chair of the PES EPSCO ministerial and the Minister of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security of Portugal, Ana Mendes Godinho, said:

“Thanks to socialists, we have a position from the Council, and we have a position from the European Parliament. Now we are focused on delivering the deal that Europe’s 28 million platform workers deserve.

“Establishing derogations or restrictions to the legal presumption would only perpetuate the existing imbalance between the platforms and the individuals that perform digital work.

“A strong directive will ensure that people working through digital labour platforms like Uber, Bolt, Glovo or Deliveroo enjoy strong labour rights and social benefits, as they are entitled to.

“By creating a common set of EU rules, we can finally provide increased legal certainty, benefiting millions of workers. Here we can show, once again, that the EU level is a force to make life better for citizens. Our mission is to secure this directive under this mandate.”

Following the approaches on the directive agreed in both the EU Council and European Parliament, socialists and democrats are preparing to negotiate an ambitious directive in trilogue. Against a backdrop of repeated attempts to undermine the directive by conservatives and liberals, the PES family is working for a deal that truly improves life for workers.

Ministers congratulated Spain’s PSOE-led government for a successful start to the Spanish Presidency of the EU Council. They commended the focus on clear social democratic themes, such as “greater social and economic justice”, including pushing for an extension of workers’ rights in several areas and for vulnerable groups such as children, women suffering from violence, and people with disabilities. These priorities build heavily on the successful domestic agenda of the Spanish government.

Looking to the period ahead, ministers wished success to Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and PSOE ahead of the general election in Spain later this month. The meeting agreed that only a strong PSOE result will secure a positive and transformative Spanish Presidency, and a Spanish government that works for the benefit of all in Spain.

The meeting was attended by:

  • Ana Mendes Godinho, Chair and Minister of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security, Portugal
  • Nicolas Schmit, European Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights, European Commission
  • Rolf Schmachtenberg, State Secretary at the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, Germany
  • Miguel Fontes, Secretary of State for Labour, Portugal
  • Luka Mesec, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, Slovenia (Observer)
  • Agnes Jongerius, EMPL Coordinator, Member of the European Parliament, S&D
  • Isabelle Schömann, Deputy General Secretary, ETUC
  • Yonnec Polet,Deputy Secretary General, PES