The 40th sectoral social dialogue committee has been set up with central government administrations, bringing together trade unions (TUNED) and the employers (EUPAE).
The new committee means that a number of central administrations have agreed to create and join a specific European employers' organisation, acting as EU employers. In the past, they were considered as EU level as representatives of their country. The committee will facilitate sharing of information and influence EU initiatives affecting more than seven million employees in central government. The creation of this committee has been prepared through a two year test-phase, a necessary timeframe for the structuring of the key actors acting in this committee.
Beyond austerity measures in a majority of Member States, EU government administrations face major common challenges. Over the past 15 years, cost-efficiency pressures and fiscal discipline due to increasing macro-economic constraints have paved the way for government efforts to streamline the public administrations. Moreover, the governments have been pressed to improve the quality of public administration services delivered to the citizens, as a result of their increasingly different and sophisticated demands. Varying forms of ‘new public management’ have been introduced, often accompanied by outsourcing processes and change of labour relations. On the other hand, higher demands towards the administrations in terms of both quality and responsiveness require additional staff.
This development requires TUNED and EUPAE to tackle social impact of the crisis, managing change, anticipating new skill needs, promoting equality and diversity, as well as considering efficiency of administrations, working conditions, ageing workforce and health and safety issues. In 2008, this sector adopted a common position on stress at work.