The working time issue is at a very important stage. On Friday (20 October), the Finnish Presidency is due to hold an 'informal' meeting to explore ways forward for the Working Time Directive dossier. A compromise text which was previously proposed by the Finnish Presidency has been rejected by the blocking minority of countries (Lead by Spain and France). However, there remains a possibility that the Presidency will try to get a deal on 7 November at the social affairs Council of Ministers meeting, although it is not likely that this will be achieved. The danger that must be avoided is that the individual opt-out is 'legitimised' either officially or through practice. We need to send a very clear message that this is not acceptable.
At the ETUC Executive Committee today (18 October) there was a very strong reiteration that the European Parliament position (the CERCAS report) is the minimum position acceptable for the ETUC and for EPSU (as mandated at the EPSU Executive Committee of June 2005).
REQUEST for affiliates:
I would therefore like to request that you contact your Government social affairs and labour Ministers/ representatives to underline that the European Trade Union movement will not accept any weakening of the Working TIme Directive and that the position of the European Parliament (CERCAS report 11 May 2005) is the way forward.
EPSU and ETUC participated in a very successful seminar yesterday to highlight this position. The seminar was jointly organised by Mr. Alejandro CERCAS MEP, in conjunction with the European Foundation for living and working conditions.
Please find the following attachments:
- the agenda for the 17 October Seminar on Working Time, organised by the European Foundation for Living and Working Conditions
- the speech at the seminar by EPSU General Secretary Carola Fischbach-Pyttel
- the follow-up press to the event as appeared in the web publication Euractiv
- the follow up press from Europolitics
I would greatly appreciate than you copy me on any communication with your national representatives.
Please contact me directly if you need any further information (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Photo: Carola Fischbach-Pyttel (second from right), EPSU General Secretary, listening to the Spanish Minister for Labour, Mr. Jesús Caldera speaking at the seminar. Mr Alejandro CERCAS MEP, and working time rapporteur, is pictured second from left.
- agenda for the 17 October Seminar on Working Time, organised by the European Foundation for Living and Working Conditions
- speech at the seminar by EPSU General Secretary Carola Fischbach-Pyttel
- follow-up press to the event as appeared in the web publication Euractiv
- follow up press from Europolitics
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