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17 October 2019
Chile: political conflict surrounding weekly working time
Chile’s Chamber of Deputies plenary session on 23 October promises to be a landmark assembly, for on this day the opposition-dominated chamber will likely vote for draft legislation formulated by two communist-party deputies. The text, which dates back to 2017, intends for weekly working time to fall from...
16 October 2019
EU: European Labour Authority becomes a working reality
Companies looking to offer its services in another EU Member State or employ staff from different EU Member States could soon be able to turn to the European Labour Authority (ELA) and receive clear and precise information on applicable rules and regulations, including information on sector collective...
16 October 2019
EU : key points from the whistleblowers directive (infography)
The Directive of the European parliament and of the council on the protection of persons who report breaches of union law was adopted by the EU Council Ministers on 07 October, and intends to better protect those who report illegal activities and/or those violating EU law. Member State transposition should...
Corporate social responsibility
15 October 2019
ACT partner members seeking decent living wages for those in the global garment and footwear sector adopt a joint purchasing practices due diligence framework
In September 2019 and in a new departure, ACT members (a collaboration of 20 global companies representing a broad range of brands and labels global brands and IndustriALL Global Union representing garment, textile and footwear workers from around the globe) adopted an accountability and monitoring framework on purchasing practices. ACT aims to use collective bargaining as a means to...
11 October 2019
UN : discussions over a treaty on the liability of transnational businesses for human rights violations to recommence
The UN inter-governmental working group on transnational businesses and human rights is to hold a fifth session of discussions over an international, legally binding instrument between 14 and 18 October in Geneva. The talks will be based on a new draft text, presented by the rapporteur having been drawn up following the fourth discussion session in October 2018 (see article n°10810). This initiative seeks to ensure effective access to justice and reparations for victims of human rights violations committed by...
11 October 2019
Amazon sets out its ‘positions’ on a range of social and societal topics
Faced with ever more questions about its practices, especially from its own employees, as the Amazon Employees for Climate Justice group demonstrated, the tech giant decided on 10 October to publish a statement “to provide customers, investors, policymakers, employees, and others our views on certain issues”, underlining in the introduction that “there is much room for healthy debate and differing opinions”. Amazon, which employs 630,000 people across the globe, has taken a stance on various issues –...
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Digital tools
16 October 2019
Digital tools: UK start-up ‘predicts’ employee resignations
Oxford-based visual data management start-up, Zegami, has just launched a new tool for employers that will enable them to predict which employees are most likely to resign from their jobs. Called Zegami HR, the platform operates using a tailor-made algorithm developed from work carried out at the Oxford University Computational Biology division into the factors that made people happy at work in a company. The algorithm uses relevant data and includes age, salary, career path, academic history, career satisfaction...
30 September 2019
Digital tools: when companies offer work experience that is 100% virtual
Doing an internship at a multinational firm without even leaving the house, and perhaps while still in one’s pyjamas, is now a possibility, thanks to the concept of virtual work experience offered by the Australian start-up InsideSherpa. Since 2017, the company has offered short work experience programmes, exclusively online, at companies from all over the globe. While students see the platform as an unprecedented opportunity to discover large companies and gain experience, employers using this method hope to...
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HR practices
4 October 2019
How Valeo has rolled out a gender equality index worldwide
The French automotive supplier made use of the equality index* that French companies are required to calculate on an annual basis as of this year, with the aim of achieving perfect gender pay equality within in three years (see article n°10909). In March, when France’s equality index was published, Valeo announced plans to extend it to all countries where it operates. Bruno Guillemet, the group’s human resources director, shares with Planet Labor the results yielded by this indicator, after its application on...
4 October 2019
Great Britain : large firms reach 30% target for women on boards
For the first time, the boards of companies listed on the FTSE 350 stock market index have reached a 30% level of female representation. “This is an incredible milestone on the journey towards greater diversity,” said Brenda Trenowden, global co-chair of the campaign group the 30% Club, which has been fighting for this cause and published the figures on 3 October. She added: “We have seen senior leadership amongst the world’s largest companies evolve for the better, lifting gender representation from a...
2 October 2019
Germany: new online tool to help companies improve their work-life balance policies
How much does my company really help staff balance their work and private lives? To help companies answer this question as accurately as possible, Germany’s Families Minister, in collaboration with the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (DIHK), and the Association of Human Resources Managers (BPM), has developed a Work-Life balance index (Fortschrittsindex Vereinbarkeit). Launched on 27 September during the ‘Family – a success factor’ congress held in Berlin, this new online tool...
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Industrial relations
15 October 2019
ARLA Foods: global framework agreement signed with the IUF combatting sexual harassment at work
On 07 October, the International Union of Food, Agricultural, Hotel, Restaurant, Catering, Tobacco and Allied Workers’ Associations (IUF) together with the Scandinavian multinational cooperative Arla Foods (comprising 12,500 milk producers and 19,000 employees across the globe) signed an agreement to anticipate and combat sexual harassment at work. In it is an explicit affirmation of a zero tolerance policy as well as details on a very real willingness by Arla Foods to collaborate with the IUF both globally...
15 October 2019
Portugal : soon to be approved UGT affiliated bank & insurance sector union seeks to also advocate for workers in third party service provision
The SBSI union (Banking trade union for the south and the islands) has established a new trade union body by way of merging UGT affiliated bodies representing Banks in the Center of the country, Portugal’s Insurers, and all Insurance Businesses. Legal statutes for the new entity, Mais Sindicato (Extra Union), have been lodged for approval by the labor authorities. The goal of the new...
14 October 2019
Ireland : Financial Services Union calls for legislation on the right to disconnect
The Financial Services Union called on 10 October – on World Mental Health Day – for a law that would grant workers the right to disconnect. The union for workers in the financial services sector, says such a law should specify that “workers should not be obliged to answer calls or reply to emails, or engage in any work-related activity outside of paid working hours”. The call from the FSU comes after talks in September between the union and Ireland’s Minister for Business, Enterprise, and Innovation,...
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Legal developments
14 October 2019
Finland: 2020 budget sets aside funding to foster the recruitment of skilled workers
The government of Finland has just unveiled its budget for 2020, which includes a jobs package aimed at facilitating the recruitment of skilled workers by companies. The measures were prepared by sub-groups of the tripartite working group for promoting employment (made up of government, employers and unions). The working group will continue to focus on this topic up until April 2020. The employment package represents a further €300 million when compared to the previous budget.
14 October 2019
Germany : a net rise in regular employment?
Is German growth creating only unstable jobs or is it leading to more regular employment? To this important question, which is often exploited for political ends, Germany’s federal statistics agency offers an optimistic answer. According to figures published on 10 October, the German economy is clearly producing more regular jobs than previously. The threshold of 70% of jobs being defined as regular – in other words an open-ended employment contract for at least 21 hours a week of work – was exceeded in 2018. Currently, 70.3% of all jobs in Germany qualify as regular and it is the first time since 2002 that this proportion has been...
8 October 2019
Ireland : draft legislation under debate that would extend paid leave to new parents by two weeks
The draft ‘Parents Leave and Benefit Bill’ (c.f. document attached), brought by three Government Ministers, is currently undergoing parliamentary debate and aims to come into force on 01 November 2019. The draft Bill intends for two weeks paid ‘Parents’ leave’ for each parent, to be taken in one or two lots during the first year following a child’s birth/adoption and applies in addition to current maternity, paternity and adoptive leave entitlements. The additional leave would be paid at the same rate...
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