Meeting on the Review of the Working Time Directive
Emerging from the crisis - fair pay and employment in the public services
Room B, ITUH, Brussels
18 February 2011, 10.30-15.30
We are inviting affiliates to send representatives to a meeting to discuss EPSU’s response to the second phase consultation on the Working Time Directive. The meeting would also debate EPSU strategy in response to the potential proposals from the Commission to amend the Directive or call on the social partners, particularly in health, social and emergency services, to negotiate agreements on working time rather than going through a legislative process.
Under our European Commission funded collective bargaining project (Emerging from the crisis – fair pay and employment in the public services) we have the opportunity to organise a follow-up meeting to the social dialogue and collective bargaining conference that took place in December 2010. We are proposing to use this meeting to focus on working time as this has now emerged as a central issue with a potentially significant impact on the employment conditions of millions of our members and could become a priority in the European social dialogue.
The Commission published its Communication for the second phase consultation on 21 December. It also published reports on the implementation of the Directive and of the European Court Judgements on on-call time.
The consultation asks the social partners to respond to a small number of questions – essentially should any revision to the Directive be limited to on-call time and rest periods or are there other issues that need to be involved. And are the social partners willing to consider negotiating on some or all of these issues and amend the Directive that way rather than through the normal legislative process.
EPSU has commissioned some research on working time and in particular the question of on-call time and we will be able to provide some background information in time for the meeting on the 18th.
A draft agenda and participation form for the meeting are attached.
It is our understanding that the main issues arising from the Working Time Directive – on-call time, the 48-hour week and rest periods – are primarily challenges for the health, social care and emergency services. We would, therefore, expect most participants at the meeting to come from these sectors but we would not make the meeting exclusive to these sectors if affiliates face problems in other sectors.
We will be able to provide interpretation in English, French and German and financial assistance will be available for 10 colleagues from Central and Eastern Europe.