In the European Pillar of Social Rights, the EU Commission recommends that Member States give all workers the right to adequate social protection. Workers and, under comparable conditions, self-employed persons should benefit from social protection regardless of the nature and duration of their employment relationship. Thus, Brussels has addressed concerns that were expressed by stakeholders during the consultation on the Pillar of Social Rights.
The EU Commission involved the European social partners soon after publishing the Pillar in order to ask their views on possible actions at European level. The views of the social partners on mandatory European initiatives are quite different. Whereas employers’ representatives have stated that there is no need to change European laws, workers’ representatives believe there is room for improvement in terms of implementing existing EU legislation.
In addition, the EU Commission has directly consulted various interest groups, in particular the statutory social security institutions, about a possible initiative at EU level. In comments submitted by the umbrella associations of Germany’s social insurance system, they pointed out that the Member States must look for solutions at national level if there are gaps in social security. However, improved exchange of information and experiences could help the Member States to fulfil their responsibilities.
The Commission intends to use the results of the consultations and hearings to present a proposal for an initiative as part of their ‘Social Fairness Package’ in March 2018.