Brussels, London – European and global transport unions say now is the time for the Council of the EU to agree a mandate on the Platform Work Directive that will protect the employment rights of millions of app-based transport workers, including ride-hail drivers and food delivery riders.
The European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF), the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) and affiliated unions are calling on the Council to hammer out a deal, so that trilogue negotiations with the European Commission, Council and Parliament can finally begin.
“After months of deadlock at the EU Council, time is running out on the legislative clock for the process to finalise the Directive before the 2024 European Elections,” said Livia Spera, ETF General Secretary. “While we have very strong reservations about the Council proposal, EU governments must seize this moment and find a path forward before Council’s meeting on June 12. We can't allow this opportunity to combat employment misclassification slip away from us now.”
ITF General Secretary Stephen Cotton also said today that we cannot afford any further delays: “The platform lobby is out in full force attempting to undermine this landmark legislation, but we can't afford delays. Transport workers’ unions remain steadfast in our commitment to a strong directive. This is our chance to ensure that platform work is decent work, not a wedge to undercut the standards and conditions workers have fought for over many generations.”
“While we are extremely concerned about lobbying of EU Council members to allow national-level derogations that could void the presumption of employment status, we believe that the details of the Directive can best be worked out in the trilogue process given the strength of the EU Commission and Parliament’s positions,” said Cotton.
Despite intense efforts to weaken the EU Parliament’s position, MEPs adopted a position in December 2022 that categorically agreed on a strong presumption of employment, strengthening the EU Commission’s original proposal to combat misclassification from December 2021.