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Article

16 May 2022

Author:
Luca Bertuzzi, EURACTIV.com

EU: Parliament rapporteur Gualmini pushes for more robust employment protection in forthcoming platform workers directive

'Leading MEP pushes for tight employment protection in platform workers directive', 10/12 May 2022

In December [2021], the European Commission proposed a directive to improve platform workers’ working conditions, the first legislative attempt to regulate a growing but still untouched market. The EU executive estimated that 28 million people are currently working in the gig economy in Europe, a figure set to reach 43 million by 2025.

In her draft report [...] published on Tuesday (10 May), Gualmini, the European Parliament’s rapporteur, made significant changes to the text to introduce more robust protection for workers and tighter obligations in automated decision-making embedded in the workplace...

At the centre of the Commission’s proposal is the so-called rebuttable presumption of employment, a provision that would make workers automatically classify as employees unless the platform proved otherwise. The original approach was that this legal presumption would be triggered if a worker met two of five criteria...

“These criteria risked not being exhaustive. The world of the platform economy is so varied and wide that it is very difficult to force it within five criteria,” she explained. In Gualmini’s proposal, the legal presumption would work very differently...

Platforms will have to declare their workers’ contracts with the relevant social security body. In case the declared contracts are for independent status, the social security body will have to verify them against the presumption of employment...

Such transparency obligations are also meant to give the EU countries data on how many people work for the platforms and with what type of contract...

The draft report states that a human must always remain the ultimate decision-maker for all essential aspects of professional life. Therefore, algorithms should not be able to decide on their own on the dismissal of workers or the organisation of their working schedule...

The draft report mentions fostering a social dialogue between the workers and the platforms and empowering the workers to freely communicate among themselves, a measure intended to enable them to unionise...

The draft report will be the basis for the parliamentary discussions in the committee on employment and social affairs...

[article mentions Deliveroo and Amazon]


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