ETUC Resolution on Fair Labour Mobility and Migration
Adopted at the Executive Committee Meeting of 22 March 2021
With a view to implement the ETUC Action Programme 2019-2023, and against the background of the COVID-19 pandemic and recent EU policy developments, the ETUC has adopted this resolution which focuses on the following issues:
1) The need for fair labour mobility and migration: A holistic and rights-based approach is necessary to ensure fairness and equality between local, mobile and migrant workers. Cross-border workers make up an essential part of the European workforce but remain the least protected, the lowest paid, and the most vulnerable.
2) Ensuring decent working and living conditions: The ETUC calls on the EU to introduce legally binding minimum standards on decent accommodation for all mobile and migrant workers. Workers should be informed about their rights at work in writing in their own language before they travel and have access to information on how to join a union and counselling services.
3) Affirming the obligations of intermediaries: The abuses of the Temporary Agency Work Directive 2008/104 (TAWD) in cross-border situations call for better enforcement and an assessment of the legal framework. The accountability of private recruitment agencies operating in the internal market should be regulated at EU level, to enhance their transparency and obligations. The permissibility of posting of agency workers must be scrutinised against the background of persisting cross-border social fraud and letterbox companies.
4) Abusive practices in subcontracting: The ETUC calls on the Commission to put forward a general legal framework on subcontracting, to tackle abusive practices and to ensure equal treatment of workers throughout the whole chain of contractors.
5) Effective social security coordination and protection: The ETUC is calling for a prompt and fair finalisation of the ongoing revision of the Regulations on the Coordination of Social Security Systems 883/2004 and 987/2009.
6) Expanding and improving regular labour migration pathways: The ETUC calls for more regular and decent labour migration pathways across different skills levels and sectors. Ensuring regular migration pathways is the only way to protect workers and prevent them from abuse and exploitation.
7) Improved enforcement and protection of all workers: Undocumented and undeclared workers must be able to claim their employment rights and effective complaint mechanisms must be available for all workers regardless of status.