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14 March 2022
EU: employment ministers unblock directive to increase the number of women on boards
The proposed directive on “improving the gender balance among directors of companies listed on stock exchanges” was backed by a majority of European Union member states in the Council of the EU on 14 March. First unveiled by the European Commission in 2012, the directive was blocked for years due to differences regarding the constraints that would be imposed and the calendar for meeting the targets set (see article n°9406). However, France has put the issue back on the agenda, having assumed the Presidency of...
8 March 2022
EU: females still being paid 13% less than male counterparts in 2020
Latest Eurostat data show that the gender difference in gross hourly average earnings in the EU 27 Member States was still 13% in favour of men. Beyond the persistence of wage inequality within the Member States, this gap, which is calculated on the basis of all employees’ salaries, bears witness to the difference in gender-based access to the best paid positions.
23 February 2022
EU: EU draft directive on corporate sustainability due diligence finally unveiled
On 23 February, and following approval by the College of Commissioners, the European Commission presented its long-awaited draft directive on due diligence. Although NGOs had been worried that repeated postponements would mean a watering down of the text, the broad definition of companies coming under its scope has been retained and the text imposes a wide range of due diligence obligations on them, even including them having to alter their strategies when their business activities run counter to climate...
14 February 2022
EU: disabled workers unable to do their job must be reassigned provided it does not constitute a “disproportionate burden” for the employer
In a judgment passed on 10 February 2022, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that “where a worker becomes permanently incapable of remaining in his or her job because of the onset of a disability, reassignment to another job may constitute an appropriate measure in the context of reasonable accommodation”, under Article 5 of Directive 2000/78. The ruling emanates from...
18 January 2022
EU: paid annual leave must be taken into account when calculating the overtime work hours threshold (CJEU judgment)
In a judgment handed down on 13 January 2022, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that an employer could not exclude the “the hours corresponding to the period of paid annual leave” from the calculation intended to “determine whether the threshold of hours worked giving entitlement to overtime pay is reached.” A German worker claimed 72 euros, as a 25% supplement on 22.45 hours worked, because he believed that the 184-hour overtime threshold had been exceeded during a period in...
14 January 2022
EU: minimum wages rise in 18 member states from 1 January 2022
Despite the ongoing Covid-19 crisis, the vast majority of European Union member states have increased their statutory minimum wage, as of 1 January 2022. The increases vary significantly from country to country, ranging from 0.9% in France and Malta to almost 52% in Hungary. The gap between the monthly minimum wages of the EU’s richest members states and those in Eastern European remains large, despite sustained efforts in the latter countries to close the gap. This policy is nevertheless bearing fruit, with a...
9 December 2021
EU: European Commission proposes presumption of salaried employee status for platform workers
On 09 December and following a process launched in spring 2021 with the consultation of social partners, the European Commission unveiled a Directive proposal aimed at improving the working conditions of platform workers. Faced with a debate on legal status, the EU Commission chose to define a presumption of salaried status for platform workers, unless a platform does not fulfil the criteria characterising it as an employer. The directive proposal also imposes obligations on platforms over the management of their...
Gig workers and the regulation of platforms
1 December 2021
EU: trade unions and several governments exhort the European Commission for the presumption of a salaried employee relationship to apply to digital platform workers
On 08 December, the European Commission is due to present a draft directive aimed at improving the working conditions and protection of platform workers. In an open letter to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, several EU leaders are calling for the presumption of the employment relationship to be established for all delivery drivers, passenger car drivers, and domestic...
30 November 2021
EU: ahead of adoption of the minimum wage directive, what policies are operating in the Member States?
Now that MEPs have voted in favour of an amended draft directive on minimum wages, the text will next be negotiated over the coming weeks between MEPs and the EU Council. If adopted, the Directive should enable an improvement in the level of these salaries by way of collective bargaining, and should also provide for new sanctions in the event of violations of the right to minimum wages. As of the end of 2021, what minimum wages, if any, are the EU Members States applying? In this article Planet Labor compares the...
23 November 2021
EU: Danish Parliament rejects EU minimum wage directive
While MEPs are due to vote this week on a resolution that requires the EU Member States to promote social dialogue between employers and employees when collective wage agreements cover fewer than 80% of employees, the Nordic countries are united in opposing the EU Directive. On 18 November, the Danish Parliament voted to support the government in its rejection of the text. “I can understand that other countries are concerned about what is going on on their labour markets with low wages where people can’t live...