Three ambitious EU targets

Targets by 2030

  • at least 78%of the population aged 20 to 64 should be in employment by 2030
  • at least 60%of all adults should be participating in training every year by 2030
  • a reduction of at least15 millionin the number of people at risk of poverty or social exclusion

Where we stand

The coronavirus crisis has put a halt on a six-year positive employment progress, with an employment rate of 72.4% by the third quarter of 2020. By 2016, only 37% of adults were participating in learning activities every year. In 2019, around 91 million persons (out of which 17.9 million were children aged 0-17) were at risk of poverty or social exclusion in the EU.

Turning principles into reality


What Europeans think about Social Europe


Public consultation

These testimonials are part of a large-scale public consultation with over 1000 written contributions from Member States, regions, cities, social partners, civil society organisations, international organisations, businesses, think tanks and citizens. In addition, the Commission consulted over 1500 key stakeholders – including the European Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions – with dedicated webinars. The Action Plan draws on its results.

Results of the public consultation

Eurobarometer survey

9 in 10 Europeans (88%) consider social Europe to be important to them personally, according to a 2021 Eurobarometer survey on social issues.

Results of the 2021 Eurobarometer survey on social issues

Eurobarometer survey

Porto Social Summit in May 2021

The Social Summit in Porto on 7-8 May 2021 will be organised by the Portuguese Council Presidency and provide the opportunity to give fresh impetus to social rights in the EU. It will be an occasion for EU Heads of State or Government, EU institutions, social partners and other key stakeholders to renew their commitment to implement the Pillar.

Timeline and key actions

The Action Plan sets out a number of EU actions that the Commission is committed to take during the current mandate (until the end of 2024), building on the many actions already undertaken since the proclamation of the European Pillar of Social Rights in Gothenburg, Sweden, in 2017. This Action Plan is the Commission’s contribution to turn the principles of the Social Pillar into reality.

  • First quarter of 2021

    Green Paper on Ageing
    Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan
    First-stage consultation of EU social partners on platform work
    Action Plan on the European Pillar of Social Rights
    Proposal for a Revision of the Social Scoreboard
    New Disability Rights Strategy
    Binding Pay Transparency Measures
    Effective Active Support to Employment
    Updating the new Industrial Strategy for Europe
    Strategy on the Rights of the Child, accompanied by European Child Guarantee
    Joint Report on the Application of the Employment Equality Directive and the Race Equality Directive
    Renewed Sustainable Finance Strategy
    European Health Data Space
    Guidance Notices on Public Procurement of Innovation and on Socially Responsible Public Procurement

  • Second quarter of 2021

    Follow-up to the White Paper on Artificial Intelligence
    A Trusted and Secure European E-ID
    New Occupational Safety and Health Strategy
    European Platform on Combating Homelessness
    Communication on Decent Work Worldwide

  • Third quarter of 2021

    Skills and Talent Package, including a Revision of Long-Term Residence and Review of the Single Permit Directives, as well as setting out options for an EU Talent Pool

  • Fourth quarter of 2021

    Action Plan for the Social Economy
    Individual Learning Accounts and Micro-Credentials Framework
    Extension and Adaption of the Joint Employment Report
    Affordable Housing Initiative
    Initiative on Collective Bargaining for the Self-employed

  • 2023

    First EU Report on Access to Essential Services
    European Social Security Pass (ESSPASS)

  • 2024

    First evaluation of the European Labour Authority

  • 2025

    Review of the Action Plan on the European Pillar of Social Rights

  • Already achieved in 2020

    European Gender Equality Strategy
    Industrial Strategy and SME Strategy
    Temporary Support to Mitigate Unemployment Risks in an Emergency (SURE)
    Revised Multi-Annual Financial Framework 2021-2027
    Recovery and Resilience Facility and REACT-EU
    European Skills Agenda for Sustainable Competitiveness, Social Fairness and Resilience
    Council Recommendation for Vocational Education and Training
    Youth Employment Support, accompanied by Reinforced Youth Guarantee
    European Education Area
    Digital Education Action Plan (2021-2027)
    Anti-Racism Action Plan
    EU Roma Strategic Framework on Equality, Inclusion and Participation, accompanied by a Council Recommendation on Roma Equality, Inclusion and Participation
    Renovation Wave
    Pact for Skills
    Action Plan on Integration and Inclusion
    LGBTIQ Equality Strategy
    Proposal for a Directive on Adequate Minimum Wages
    Pharmaceuticals Strategy

Joining forces to deliver a more social Europe

Delivering on the European Pillar of Social Rights is a shared political commitment and responsibility of the EU institutions, national, regional and local authorities, social partners and civil society, all having a role to play in line with their competences.

  • Chart showing growth

    Member States should make full use of the unprecedented EU funds available to support reforms and investments: the EU budget, NextGenerationEU, the European Social Fund Plus, and more.

  • Cog moving.

    Member States should make the best use of the European Semester to coordinate economic, employment and social reforms and investments, putting people and their wellbeing at the centre.

  • Classical building

    The engagement of national, regional and local authorities, social partners and civil society is essential to the implementation of the Pillar.

  • Hands shaking in front of globe.

    Guiding and international EU action in the social area helps affirm the EU’s role as a responsible global leader, promoting decent work and social inclusion worldwide.