(17 February 2022) To mark a decade and a half of the social dialogue committee and to raise grassroots awareness about the resources provided by European dialogue, EPSU and CEMR stepped aboard a common initiative. The joint project on social dialogue in local and regional government focuses on three key areas where the work of social partners deserves particular attention: third-party violence and harassment at work, gender equality and migration. After a presentation of the different national experiences of trade unions from France, Sweden and Spain, the three countries will host a thematic seminar to discuss a specific area.
Seminar on Gender Equality in Sweden
For what concerns the second key theme of gender equality, the thematic seminar was organized around the Swedish example. As well as collaborating with the country’s gender equality agency on gender mainstreaming and other initiatives, social partners in Sweden have sought innovative solutions to some of the specific causes of persistent gender inequality in the Swedish labor market. Among the key issues highlighted there is the need to increase wage spread in female-dominated professions, as to create average increases in pay levels and build incentives for professional development. Another way to tackle gender inequality in the workplace is through encouraging full-time work. Women are more likely to be employed part-time, often to carry out unpaid domestic labor or childcare, with women ending up with lower pensions and missing out on training and promotion. The project run by SALAR and Kommunal, ‘The Full Time Journey’ is an example of how inequality can be tackled by making full-time work the norm. All in all, even in a country like Sweden, where since the 1970s gender equality has been pursued as a priority, there is still much room to improve equality between genders.