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Table: ETUC demands and Commission proposal

Comparative table demands ETUC / proposal Commission

 

Subject

ETUC

Commission

1

general

delete reference to “a procedure for information and consultation”

no

 

delete exemption for navy crews and ideological guidance undertakings

no

 

include the requirement to promote equality of men and women

yes : art. 6.2.b
balanced representation with regard to activities, category and gender

 

organise public register for all agreements

No

2

definitions

reduction threshold of 1.000 to 500 and from 150 to 100 employees for creation of an EWC

no

 

add the definition of information of the SE directive 2001/86

definition added, but not SE

 

change the definition of consultation in line with SE directive 2001/86

new definition, but not SE

3

controlling undertaking

precise the definition, including joint ventures, franchising...

no

 

establishment of a EWC

management must provide all necessary information for the opening of negotiations in good time, regardless of the responsibility of other parts of the group

yes : art. 4.4
all management boards shall be responsible for obtaining and transmitting to the parties concerned the information required

 

TUs must be entitled to request relevant information to ascertain whether or not a company is covered by the directive

no, but art. 4.4 management shall be responsible for transmiting to all parties concerned the information required

 

reduce the negotiation period to one year + max six months extension

No

4

establishment of a EWC

subsidiary requirements must apply if negotiations adjourned for 4 months

no

 

no grouping or indirect representation

no

 

add the right to have substitutes for the SNB and the EWC

no

 

introduce the right for the SNB to meet without management before and after the meetings, with experts

yes : art. 5.4 before and after any meeting the SNB shall be entitled to meet, without managment being present

 

no max. number of members of the SNB

yes : art. 5.2.b
but : min. 50 employees

 

introduce the right for TUs to initiate negotiations

no, but art. 5.2.b the competent workers’ organisations shall be informed of the compostion of the SNB and the start of the negotiations

5

facilities

access to all sites must be facilitated

No

 

introduce the right for EWC members to inform all employees and the resources to communicate with them

yes : art. 10.2 the members of the EWC shall inform the local representatives or the workforce as a whole
but : no resources to communicate

 

introduce the right to training, free time for this and costs covered by employer

yes : art. 10.4 in so far as this is necessary
but : costs ?

 

the EWC must have the right to determine the content of the training

no

 

include training provisions in body of the directive

yes

6

content of the agreement

move experts and operating expenses from subsidiary requirements to article 6, content of the agreement

No

7

renegotiations

ensure that EWCs can take structural changes into account by enabling renegotiation or adaptation of the agreement

yes : art. 6.2.g and 13.3 the agreement shall determine the arrangements for amending it and the cases in wich it should be renegotiated, when the structure changes significantly management shall initiate negotiations

 

existing EWCs must have the opportunity to benefit from the improvements

no : art. 13.2 no general obligation to renegotiate existing agreements

 

introduce the obligation to open renegotiations upon request

yes : art. 13.3 but : only where the structure changes significantly

 

introduce transitional arrangements and abbreviated time frame for renegotiations

yes : art. 13.3
but : no abbreviated time frame

8

confidential information

limit the definition to personal data and company secrets

no

9

protection of employees

improve protection of representatives

no

 

give them the right to paid time off to pursue their duties

yes : art. 10.1 but not explicit
they shall have the means required to apply their rights stemming from the directive

10

protection of rights

guarantee legal proceedings : the right to go to court, costs paid by employer

no

 

management decisions must be abandoned if they violate information and consultation rights

no

 

sanctions must be effective, proportionate and dissuasive

no

 

ensure rules for collective decision-making in content of the agreement and fall-back procedure

No

11

link with other provisions

information and consultation procedure must be in parallel and iteratively on local, national and transnational level

yes : art. 6.2.c, 12.2 and 12.3
the agreement shall determine linking European/
national level, if no such arrangements : processes start at the same time

 

parties concerned must be able to communicate

no

12

subsidiary requirements
ordinary meetings

introduce the right to be apprised of reasons for a decision

yes : SR 1.a the EWC must obtain a response and the reasons for that response to any opinion they might express

 

at least two regular meetings per year

no

 

no max. number of members of a EWC

yes : max. was crossed out
but : min. 50 employees

 

include data protection, gender mainstreaming, anti-discrimination, policies for the integration of differently abled people, environment, safety & security and investments

no

 

introduce the right to an internal follow-up meeting

no

 

ensure interpretation for all meetings of EWC and select committee

no

 

ensure translation of written information

no, but information must be transmitted in such fashion as is appropriate

 

costs for interpretation and translation to be borne by the employer

yes : SR 7 but : only interpretation and unless otherwise agreed

 

lay the burdon to prove that an issue involves only one country with management

no

 

include decisions made in another country

no, although still in preamble (12)

13

subsidiary requirements
select committee

increase the maximum number of members of the select committee from 3 to 5

yes : SR 1.d
at most 5 members

 

select committee where the EWC has nine members or more

yes : SR 1.d provision “where its size so warrants” was crossed out

 

at least 4 meetings per year

no

 

provide the select committee with all the necessary facilities to meet and to communicate

yes : SR 1.d it must have the conditions enabling it to exercise its activities on a regular basis

14

subsidiary requirements
exceptional circumstances

a more precise definition of exceptional circumstances

no

 

more explicit and practicable provisions for extraordinary meetings cfr. 2001/86

no

 

add the right to a follow-up extraordinary meeting in case management does not act in accordance with the opinion

no

15

subsidiary requirements
experts

remove the possibility to restrict to pay for more than one expert

no

 

experts must have the right to participate in all meetings and every part of the process

no

16

union recognition

TU representatives must be able to attend all meetings of the SNB

yes : art. 5.4
at the request of the SNB

 

TU representatives must have the right to participate in EWC meetings

no

 

no restriction for TU officials to become full members of an EWC

no

Source: Bruno Demaitre @ ETUI (Education) 2009

According to Commissioner’s Vladimir Spidla announcement during the EWC Conference organised by ETUC on 9-10. June 2008, the EC would announce the draft proposal officially at the beginning of July 2008. Indeed, on the 02/07/2008 the EC officially announced a Proposal for Directive of European Parliament and Council (revised Directive 94/45/EC). Compared to the Commission's original proposals for changes included in the Communication about the revision (February 2008, opening of the 2nd stage of consultation with social partners) the proposed amendments are much weaker.

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