Trade unions at EU CSO consultation on new development framework

TUDCN attended a CSO consultation organised by the European Commission on the revision of the European Consensus on Development, in Brussels on 19 October 2016.

The European Commission described the guidelines of the review and the most urgent topics that EU development policy needs to address, such as migration, peace and fragility. The sessions focused on leaving no one behind, governance, transparency and accountability, implementation of the 2030 Agenda and partnerships.

On the issue of implementations, TUDCN Advocacy Officer Joan Lanfranco made clear that having a job does not necessarily guarantees livelihood for workers and their families. Implementation of SDG8 on decent work, but also of SDG10 on reducing inequalities requires multi-stakeholder solutions to include all actors and leave no one behind. Social dialogue, between employers, workers and governments on issues generally relating to economic and social policy. In terms of just transition, social dialogue can play a role in assisting workers and communities whose livelihoods depend on sectors that must reduce carbon emissions.

TUDCN also transmitted that social dialogue requires an enabling environment and an effective institutional framework, where social partners have the necessary freedom to organize. Workers and trade unions need the necessary freedom to organize and negotiate with employers. Social dialogue also facilitates social peace and is a forceful instrument for reconciliation and reconstruction. The case of Tunisia, shows social partners engaging in social dialogue, resulting in the award of the Nobel peace prize in 2015. Moreover, social dialogue is yet another way to hold the private sector accountable.

In terms of policy coherence, trade unions made clear that decent work narrative to be consistent in all development initiatives that eventually will fall under the new Consensus. Take the EIP, the proposal talks about more and more jobs. EU development policy has to speak clearly about decent jobs with the necessary protection for workers and their families.

Read the trade union position on the revision of the EU Consensus on Development.