Health and Social Services, Health
EPSU is a strong voice for the about 10.5 million social service workers in the EU and in other European countries. Our aims are to protect and improve social services across Europe as well as the employment conditions of workers in the sector. EPSU is actively involved in initiatives exploring the scope and format for social dialogue in social services at EU-level..
There are millions of social service workers across Europe who provide vital care for children, the elderly, the disabled and others with urgent needs – whether at home or in institutions. Their work and contribution to society is undervalued and more often than not poorly rewarded. Women make up the majority of the social services workforce and in many countries migrant workers also make an invaluable contribution to the sector. Gender equality runs through all of EPSU’s work and is central to its activities in social services as is action to defend migrant workers’ rights.
EPSU is making a clear case for more resources for the sector and for better pay and conditions for social service workers, for more and better collective agreements, for proper training and professional development. Supporting quality, affordable and accessible social services is an essential investment that brings both economic and social benefits.
EPSU’s thematic priorities in social services are long-term care for the elderly, including personal care and household services, childcare as well as organising in the sector on which you find more information by clicking on the links below:
Following the comments of Ursula Von den Leyen in her State of the Union address and the comments of other DG SANTE officials on the issue of the health and care workforce, EPSU wants to point out that political speeches need to be followed by concrete policies and concrete proposals.
The group discussed recent developments on worker protection in the EU and beyond, an interactive risk assessment tool in healthcare, and the revisions of directives on Carcinogens and Mutagens and Reprotoxins (CMRD 5) and asbestos.
EPSU recently held a productive discussion with European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Stella Kyriakides, to tackle the critical staff shortages facing healthcare and care workers in Europe.
European Parliament interest group calls for concrete steps to protect healthcare workers' mental health
On 11 July 2023 the European Parliament Intensive Care Interest Group (EPIC-IG), adopted a joint declaration on mental health calling on the European Commission and the Member States to take concrete steps to safeguard the mental health of workers in the healthcare sector.
COVID-19 Report of the European Parliament rightly identifies the issues for health and care workers but is less ambitious in overall recommendations for the future
On the 12 July 2023 the European Parliament adopted a report on the lessons learnt from the COVID-19 pandemic and recommendation for the future.
Multi-sectoral project on “the role of social partners in preventing third-party violence and harassment at work"
HOSPEEM, EPSU, CEMR, CESI as co-applicants and ETF, ETNO, ETUCE, EUPAE, UITP as associated organisations have been provided with financial support from the European Commission for a joint project in the field of social dialogue: “The role of social partners in preventing third-party violence and harassment at work” in the years 2021 and 2023 (VS/2021/0046).
Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee for Hospitals and Healthcare adopted the Action Plan of Preventing Third Party Violence and Harassment
On 9 June 2023 European Social Partners in the Hospital and Health Sector (EPSU and HOSPEEM) met in hybrid format to discuss the situation of workers and employers in their countries and on the European level.
EPSU welcomes the European Commission’s proposed Mental Health Strategy but cautions that the strategy cannot achieve its goals without directly addressing the serious problems already facing the workers who will be instrumental in its implementation.