The numbers of migrant workers - both intra- and extra-Europe - are increasing rapidly and they play an important social and economic role in Europe.
The EMF clearly states that all workers should be covered by collective agreements, the welfare state and social security systems without any kind of discrimination. To achieve this we have to use the existing collective bargaining systems to a maximum to assure the same rights to all workers, regardless of their status or origin. This would also give a clear position in the debate on posted employees, the service directive and the principle of country of origin. The debate should therefore focus on all aspects of this issue and include that of increased inner European labour mobility as well as immigrant workers and illegal immigration in Europe.
The EMF reaffirms its position regarding the service directive and the posting of workers that the principle of country of activity, i.e. the place where the worker is employed, for all wage and working conditions, is the only possibility in order to prevent any downward spiral of competition on wages, working conditions and the labour market.
The EMF strongly supports all activities aimed at better integration of migrant workers into the working community of the country where they are active. The trade unions, with the help of the EMF, have already set up special projects, as for instance the Solidarity Pact, to support the rights of these migrant workers and to organise them. Collective bargaining can play a specific role in this by providing possibilities for training, language courses, holiday periods and career opportunities, etc.
Motion approved by the EMF Congress in June 2011 concerning European Union Directives “Single Permit”, “Seasonal Work”, “Intra-Corporate Transfer”.
With the proposed Directive COM (2007) 638 concerning the so-called “Single Permit”, the risk still exists of introducing limits in respect of equal treatment and non discrimination between workers from third countries and national/EU workers.
The Stockholm Programme is to define the framework for EU police and customs cooperation, rescue services, criminal and civil law cooperation, asylum, migration and visa policy for the period 2010–2014. The Programme was discussed at the informal ministerial meeting in Stockholm in July 2009 and will ultimately be adopted by EU Heads of State and Government at the Summit in December 2009. The Stockholm Programme is an operational follow-up of the European Pact for Asylum and Migration signed in 2008.
26-27 June 2009 in Frankfurt
The event will provide an opportunity to consider the trade union response to current European union policies. National examples as well as sector related cases will be presented and the challenges for trade unions when organising workers will also be discussed.
In 2009-2010 the EMF was a partner, together with the European Federation of Building and Woodworkers, in a project entitled "MOBILJOBS. Trade union action for sustainable labour mobility in the European Union".
The project aimed at strengthening the capacity of the trade union organisations to manage labour mobility in connection with the free movement of businesses within the European Union and their establishment in Member States.