Update on Social Dialogue activities & report of 12 January meeting

Update on Social Dialogue activities in Local and Regional Government and information about next meeting of EPSU Standing Committee

The social dialogue activities for this year have already got underway, with joint EPSU/CEMR working group meetings taking place on January 12 and January 13. This note gives a short update.

EPSU/CEMR human resources working group

The working group on human resources met on January 12.

A note of the meeting is attached; See also the MINUTES

You may recall that the plenary meeting of the Social Dialogue Committee that took place on November 17 left it to the working group to explore and define its objectives and methodology (building on the outline given in our work programme). A number of ideas and suggestions were put on the table based on both EU and national and initiatives. These addressed both HR systems and particular issues such as life long learning/skills development, gender equality, and ageing workforce. The working group agreed that it would be useful to organise a joint workshop where practical examples of good HR practices would be presented and discussed. The focus should be on how the quality of work, efficiency, and attractiveness of the sector is improved by such practices.

Furthermore, it was suggested that the workshop could be organised by EPSU/CEMR affiliates in a particular country (Denmark? Finland?) rather than in Brussels, with the support of the Commission. It was agreed that the Secretariats and the committee's steering group will follow up the meeting and consider further the preparation of the workshop (to take place in early September).

EPSU/CEMR study on social dialogue in the new member states and candidate countries

On January 13th the first working group met to oversee the social dialogue study on social dialogue in local and regional government in the 10 new Member States and 3 candidate countries . The study will be coordinated by Tina Weber and Francesca Froy from Ecotec . The working group discussed in detail the framework for the first phase of the study and Ecotec will now prepare a questionnaire based on discussions that will be circulated shortly. Information from all 13 countries will be collected during the next few months from EPSU and CEMR affiliates and other sources.

To note, further meetings of the working group are scheduled on:
- April 11, to discuss the findings from first phase and prepare for the second stage, more in-depth, survey of 5 countries and;
- 29 June, to discuss the second phase and prepare the programme for the final Conference.

If we can maintain this schedule it means that we shall keep to the timetable foreseen in the budget application and conclude the study by the autumn.

A tentative date has been put forward for the Conference, 14 October 2005 in Budapest (to be confirmed).

Next meeting of the EPSU/CEMR social dialogue steering group

The social dialogue Steering Group will meet next on March 2. This meeting will replace the working group scheduled on this date to discuss the follow-up to the telework joint statement and implementation of the European agreement on this issue. This is because we think that it is still a little bit too early to discuss telework. As well as following up the human resources working group which met on January 12 (and agreeing how best to deal with telework follow-up) the Steering Group will prepare the programme for the joint workshop on employment, scheduled for May 19 in Brussels.

Next meetings of the LRG Standing Committee

The next meeting of the Standing Committee is due to take place in May. Given that the social dialogue employment workshop takes place on May 19 in Brussels, we propose to organise the Standing Committee the day before; on May 18, also in Brussels. Linking the Standing Committee meeting to the social dialogue workshop means that travel costs for up to 25 EPSU representatives can be reimbursed. Further details will follow shortly, but please put these dates in your agenda.

The date for the November meeting of the standing committee is also confirmed and this will take place on either November 7 or November 8, in Brussels.

Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you would like further information.

Brief report of the ad hoc working group on human resources management Social Dialogue Committee in Local and Regional Government - 1st meeting 12 January 2005 (document English only)