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Statement von Gabi Zimmer zur Europäischen Säule sozialer Rechte

Commission’s proposals for the Pillar of Social Rights a disappointment

Gabi Zimmer im Straßburger Plenum

Das Statement auf Deutsch findet sich am Ende der Seite.



Commission’s proposals for the Pillar of Social Rights a disappointment   



The Commission unveiled the first set of initiatives for a European Pillar of Social Rights - a key promise of Juncker’s presidency - in a statement delivered at the European Parliament today.

The Social Pillar sets out 20 key principles around three categories: (1) equal opportunities and access to the labour market, (2) fair working conditions and (3) social protection and inclusion.

Last January, the Parliament debated its own proposals for what the pillar should include, with GUE/NGL demanding concrete policies that establish new social rights, social investment and social standards.

Reacting to the proposals, GUE/NGL President and Shadow Rapporteur Gabi Zimmer said that the Commission’s proposals are a “true disappointment”: 

“Instead of an urgently needed and genuine Pillar of Social Rights that take precedence over the needs of the market, the Commission published a mere social etiquette manual without legal consequences.”

“People want a 180-degree turn from an EU that is in crisis and socially divided and facing the danger of an extremist far-right knocking at the doors of the Élysée Palace."

Speaking in plenary, GUE/NGL MEP Rina Ronja Kari argued that austerity policies played a role in the erosion of social rights and therefore must be rolled back:

“Citizens are experiencing many social problems such as poverty, inequality and unemployment, particular among youth. But it is important to recognise that austerity policies and the European Semester were played a role and lead to the erosion of social security, affecting negatively our societies.”

“We must break from austerity and ensure a budget is available to support social policies and the fight against unemployment. Member states must be allowed to invest in welfare and their social security systems or else we will lose the trust of the people.”

Meanwhile, Portuguese MEP João Pimenta criticised the proposals as weakening the rights of workers:

“The Commission’s proposals are an example of how its usual firmness when imposing sanctions and political impositions against sovereign member states suddenly goes missing when the interests of workers and citizens are at stake.”

“The truth is - as reality will show - that the strategies presented, of alleged social nature, are means to lower the rights of workers and citizens. The proposals in the field of maternity, paternity and parenthood are an example of this," Pimenta continued.  

"The Commission completely ignored the Parliament’s proposals for an increase in the period of leave and for paid leave without loss of income, fuelling instead inequality between men and women and social inequality. The proposed measures guarantee that the mechanisms for exploitation and impoverishment of workers are perpetuated.”

Finally, Greek MEP Kostadinka Kuneva called for more robust proposals:

"The Commission offers part-time work for working parents for up to 12 years without mentioning that this is low-paid and precarious employment. Is this the kind of Social Pillar Juncker wants?”

 “If the Commission really aims to achieve work-life balance for European citizens and to support working parents it should approve the draft directive on maternity leave.”

“Instead of these whitewash proposals we need a 20-week maternity leave, the establishment of paternity leave, reduction of work hours without reducing wages and better conditions for children,” Kuneva concluded.

 
 

GUE/NGL Press Contact: Ziyad Lunat 
BXL +32 228 304 70 | STB +33 3881 74097
mobile  +32 499 63 23 14
ziyad.lunat@ep.europa.eu

 

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Gab Zimmer, Vorsitzende der Linkfraktion im EU-Parlament GUE/NGL, erklärte gegenüber der Deutschen Presseagentur anlässlich der Europäischen Säule sozialer Rechte, welche die EU-Kommission heute veröffentlichte:

"Kommissionspräsident Juncker hatte versprochen, der EU die soziale Bestnote zu bescheren: eine 'Triple AAA'-Wertung. Nach einem Jahr der Konsultationen und Konferenzen in allen EU-Ländern veröffentlicht die Kommission nun 20 unverbindliche Empfehlungen. Ein kleiner Sozial-Knigge, wenn feste, einklagbare soziale Rechte auf EU-Ebene dringender denn je benötigt werden. Leere soziale Versprechungen spielen den Nationalisten um Le Pen in die Hände."

"Um aus der EU eine echte Sozialunion zu machen, bedarf es fester Standards: Vorschriften für armutsfeste Mindesteinkommen, einen EU-Vertragszusatz, der sozialen Grundrechten Vorrang vor wirtschaftlicher Konkurrenz gibt, Verbot von prekärer Beschäftigung. Hier hätte die Kommission Druck auf die Mitgliedstaaten machen können - wir hätten sie dabei unterstützt."

"Gesetzesvorschläge zu besserer Elternzeit oder sozialer Mindestabsicherung für Plattformarbeiter begrüßen wir grundsätzlich. Dafür hätte es jedoch nicht des Tamtams bedurft, das die Juncker-Kommission zwei Jahre lang um ihr soziales 'Triple AAA' für die EU gemacht hat."

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