In 2017, the European Pillar of Social Rights (EPSR) was agreed on both by the heads of state and government of the EU’s member states, and also all three institutions, the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission.
The EPSR includes a total of 20 principles for the fields of employment and social policy. They are divided into three chapters "equal opportunities and access to the labour market", "fair working conditions" and "social protection and inclusion".
The Federal Government is committed to the implementation of the EPSR as a cornerstone for strengthening the social dimension of Europe. The pandemic has presented the world, and also the EU, with new challenges. The EPSR serves as a compass for activities and initiatives at European level, but also at national, regional and local levels, also, even especially, in coping with the economic and social consequences of the pandemic.
The measures should be complementary and mutually reinforcing so that the living conditions of EU citizens everywhere in the EU are improved and social inequality reduced.
Therefore, moving forward with the implementation of the EPSR also played a major role during Germany’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union. In particular, the Council Conclusions on bolstering minimum income schemes represent a step forward in combating poverty and social exclusion.
The start of consultations on the proposed directive on adequate minimum wages in the EU will also move the debate on fair wages forward.
In 2021, the EU Commission will present an action plan for the further implementation of the EPSR. This will be dealt with in the first half of 2021 under Portugal’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Governments, civil society and the population were given the opportunity to submit proposals. The Federal Government also participated in this consultation process.