EU Directives and action
EU law has established rights and obligations for employees and their representatives to be informed and consulted via a set of directives that provide for the information and consultation of the workers, at both national and transnational levels:
At national level
- The Directive establishing a general framework for informing and consulting employees in the European Union seeks to strengthen dialogue within enterprises and ensure employee involvement upstream of decision-making, with a view to better anticipation of problems and the prevention of crises.
- The Directive relating to collective redundancies provides that an employer who envisages collective redundancies must provide workers’ representatives with specified information concerning the projected redundancies and consult.
- The Directive relating to the safeguarding of employees' rights in the event of the transfer of undertakings provides, among other substantive rights, for information and consultation of employees by the transferor and/or the transferee (article 7).
At transnational level
- The Directive for the establishment of a European Works Council or a procedure for informing and consulting employees applies to EU-scale undertakings or groups with at least 1000 employees and at least 150 employees in each of two Member States.
- Three Directives providing for the involvement of employees (i.e. information, consultation and participation in the supervisory board or board of directors) in enterprises adopting the European Company Statute or the European Cooperative Society Statute, or deriving from a cross-border merger.
In addition, the EU supports the development of transnational company agreements.
You can read about the EU’s work in this field:
- Framework on Information and Consultation
- Collective Redundancies
- Transfer of Undertakings
- European Works Councils
- European Company Statute
- European Cooperative Society
- Transnational Company Agreements
As part of its 2010 Work Programme, the Commission carried out an ex-post evaluation of the operation and effects of three Directives in the area of information and consultation of workers:
- 98/59/EC - Collective redundancies
- 2001/23/EC - Transfers of undertakings, focusing on Article 7
- 2002/14/EC - General framework.
The aim of the fitness check was to check whether these directives are 'fit for purpose' in the context of the Commission's policy of better / smart regulation.
The results of the fitness check are set out in the Staff Working Document: ‘Fitness check’ on EU law in the area of Information and Consultation of Workers adopted on 26 July 2013.