Put fair wages and platform work at the top of the EU agenda, PES urges new EU Presidency

Put fair wages and platform work at the top of the EU agenda, PES urges new EU Presidency

Representatives from PES member parties and organisations, Socialist and Democrat MEPs and civil society held an online meeting this afternoon to discuss progress on these two files. 

Network Chair and MEP Agnes Jongerius said:

“The progressive language of the new Presidency must be matched with progressive action. 2022 is the year to finally deliver for workers by boosting wages and ensuring fairness in the platform economy.

“Socialists and democrats have led the fight for fair and adequate minimum wages. Commissioner Nicolas Schmit put forward a proposal for a directive, PES ministers negotiated a common position in the Council, and I had the honour to co-draft the Parliament’s position on this file. Now that the trilogues on the directive have started, we will continue pushing in the Parliament, and in the Council, for a good directive that will effectively bring statutory minimum wages up and strengthen collective bargaining.

“We are also determined to give digital platform workers the same rights as traditional workers, notably by acknowledging they are working as employees and protecting them from abusive algorithmic management. We support the proposals initiated by Commissioner Schmit and will work to further improve the proposed directive and secure its adoption, both within Parliament and Council.

“An EU Presidency is not about presenting a social face only, it is a responsibility to deliver on long prepared legislative processes. This is the way to bring about the progressive change citizens across Europe want.”

Late last year, socialist MEPs secured the next step in the fight for fair wages when the European Parliament plenary voted to confirm the mandate given to MEP Agnes Jongerius, and her co-rapporteur, to start negotiating with the Council of the EU on the Directive on Adequate minimum wages in the European Union. The directive is a proposal from European Commissioner Schmit and comes after years of campaigning by the PES to level-up wages for all.

The proposed Directive on improving working conditions in platform work is another initiative of Commissioner Schmit backed by socialists and democrats. Progressives have consistently pushed to close legal loopholes which allow platforms to wrongly categorise workers as self-employed.

The network also held an exchange on the need to ensure every European has access to a decent and secure pension and discussed the European Year of Youth (2022).