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EU: social partners establish the basis for a directive on telework and the right to disconnect

Through . Published on 28 June 2022 à 11h31 - Update on 28 June 2022 à 11h31

In Brussels on 28 June, the European social partners are signing their joint 2022-2024 work program. In it is an ‘historic agreement’ between the European Trade Union Confederation, BusinessEurope, SMEUnited (SMEs) and SGI Europe (public services) that is geared to updating their earlier joint text, the 2002 Autonomous Agreement on Telework. The social partners are seeking to take digitalisation and the lessons of the covid-19 health crisis into account, and to establish a framework for hybrid work, remote management, monitoring, data protection and privacy. This agreement should accordingly be implemented in the form of a European directive that introduces the right to disconnect, in line with similar calls from MEPs to the European Commission made in early 2021 (c.f. article No.12331). ETUC Deputy General Secretary Esther Lynch said: “Agreeing to negotiate an EU Directive on Telework and the right to disconnect is good news for employers and workers alike. It shows that where there is a will, even the most difficult issues can be resolved by constructive negotiations.” Among their other priorities, the social partners are also focusing on ecological transition and the corresponding skills redeployment needs, youth employment, and stronger social dialogue.

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