PES pleased about Parliament’s strong commitment to social standards

19/01/2017

Antonio Tajani

We are pleased that the European Parliament has today (19 January) endorsed a strong position on the need for a European Pillar of social rights.

MEPs adopted a report by Maria João Rodrigues and the S&D group which calls for decent working conditions, action against inequality, and strong social protections.

Among other proposals, the report calls for social protections to be extended to new forms of employment, including those created by digital platforms such as Uber and Deliveroo.

A Social Pillar will ensure stronger social standards in all member states and extend social protection to workers in newly emerging industries, who currently have weaker employment rights.

Creating a real Social Union is at the top of the agenda for our political family, and with today’s vote the European Parliament has placed it clearly on the agenda of the European Union too.

PES president Sergei Stanishev said:

"Social rights must take priority over economic freedoms, not the other way around. We are committed to decent wages, to bridging the gender pay gap and to ensuring a better work-life balance. The EU should be committed to these principles too.

"With the development of a European Pillar of social rights, we finally have an opportunity to move towards a fairer Europe. I congratulate Maria João Rodrigues and the S&D group at the European Parliament on their good work – and we must now ensure that this move genuinely leads to strong social rights. It must not become simply another initiative."

Zita Gurmai, president of PES Women, added:

"This is a first step towards achieving our key objective of a progressive approach towards work-life balance, so that both men and women can enjoy fair and equal rights, as well as closing the pay gap, an ongoing priority of the PES."