Realistically, the dry period of inter-professional dialogue took time. The days of Val Duchesse are long gone, when Jacques Delors merged the bases of dialogue with the social partners, the conditions of which were set by an agreement in 1991 and annexed to the Maastricht Treaty in 1992. On 8 March 2017, representatives of EU workers` and employers` organisations signed a framework agreement on active ageing and an intergenerational approach. This independent agreement, which was guaranteed after nine months of negotiations, is implemented by the social partners at national level through a three-year contract. The development of life-cycle approaches in the workplace, which ensure a healthy working environment and promote interaction, cooperation and solidarity between different age groups, can help to keep older people active longer and to pass on knowledge and experience across generations. The three framework agreements that were subsequently transformed into directives (parental leave – 1995, amended in 2009, part-time work – 1997, temporary work – 1999) were followed by separate agreements at national level negotiated by the social partners themselves (on telework – 2002, work-related stress – 2004, harassment and violence at work – 2007 and inclusive labour markets – 2010). Barely a dozen sectoral agreements have been concluded since the creation of social dialogue in Europe. The fault lies with the conflicting objectives of the social partners and the gradual divestment of the European Commission. EURACTIV France. “Our main concern is to ensure that collective agreements are truly relevant to economic and social development. For us, these two aspects are inseparable and must be developed at the same time, while taking into account the diversity of European realities and their development. Increasing productivity and creating jobs will enable us in the future to safeguard the social well-being that characterises Europe worldwide,” says Maxime Cerutti, Director of the Social Affairs Department at BusinessEurope, one of the three European employers` organisations.
During the 29th AGE Platform Europe welcomes both the agreement of the European social partners on active ageing and the intergenerational approach adopted last month and the proposal for a directive to promote the reconciliation of work and private life under the European Pillar of Social Rights, presented by the European Commission on 26 April. The EGM now calls on the European Parliament and EU Member States to swiftly adopt the EU pillar as a framework that supports greater solidarity between generations and has a positive impact on millions of European citizens. In the Framework Agreement on Active Ageing, the European social partners outline a series of measures to be implemented to “improve the ability of workers of all ages to remain healthy and active in the labour market until the legal retirement age and to strengthen a culture of responsibility, commitment, respect and dignity in all workplaces, where all workers, regardless of age, are considered important.” These proposals, which are in line with the EGM recommendations on access to employment, highlighted in our response to the introduction of the European Pillar of Social Rights by the European Commission, are extremely important for creating sustainable working environments and employment and contributing to the sustainability of pension systems as institutions of intergenerational solidarity. . . .