During the month of June, the main appointment for the Work-Life Balance Directive has been the EPSCO Council held on 21 June, where Member States adopted a General Approach. In view of the EPSCO Council, COFACE sent a letter to all Ministers urging them to reach a compromise and not to stall negotiations. The letter was signed by the EU representatives of 3.471 NGOs and 89 trade union confederations. Our call was joint with the Presidents and Vice-Presidents of three political groups in the European Parliament, the Rapporteur and shadow Rapporteurs of five political groups, and the Presidents and Vice Presidents of three Intergroups and Coalitions of the European Parliament, together with the Presidents of two groups in the European Economic and Social Committee. To read the Open Letter click here
On 21 June the Council of Ministers reached an agreement for the Work-Life Balance Directive. This means that the legislative process can continue and, with a vote in the European Parliament expected in July 2018, families in Europe can still hope to see this directive approved before the 2019 European elections. However, the original proposal has been emptied from its key features. The text now has 10 days paternity leave (payment to be decided at national level), 4 months parental leave of which only 2 non-transferable (of these 2, only 1.5 has to be paid and payment level to be set at national level), on carers’ leave they only kept the reference of the fact that Members States should introduce one but without mentioning how long and whether it has to be paid. If you are interested in listening to what the ministers said, you can watch the video here: (discussion starting at 4’30’’ – available in all languages). We analysed the text of the agreement reached by the Ministers and published a reaction right after. To read our reaction click here
Next steps: in July the EMPL committee will vote on the European Parliament position: another milestone of this process. Stay tuned!
All the information about the #IwantWorkLifeBalance campaign here