Although all EU workers are entitled to the same labour rights across the entire EU region, in practice, these rights are often not respected. Equal employment terms and conditions with regards to labour laws are especially unfulfilled in low-qualified and low-paid jobs, which often take the form of seasonal work, internships, domestic work or are facilitated by private work agencies. In addition, employee status often lacks the basic standards of fully-fledged employment contracts (thus creating what is commonly referred to as precarious employment). As an associate partner, SOMO took part in a project discussing the role of EU and national labour related institutions and laws in strengthening the EU’s labour rights regime.

The project – that brought together 12 partner organisations –collected EU and non-EU migrant workers’ testimonies about serious labour rights violations in a number of EU countries. The testimonies were used as the basis for discussing the role of EU and national institutions and laws in improving the working conditions in Europe and ensure labour rights are respected. Individual Country Reports described key labour rights violations that they examined in specific sectors, the mechanisms of exploitation, and policy recommendations on the local and EU level.

The objective of the project was to study EU citizens’ mobility both from the perspective of economically weak regions (as a source of work migration) and from the perspective of the places of destination where migration influences labour dynamics and the broader social milieu. The concrete experience of migrant workers were taken as a starting point towards a broader discussion on the future of labour in Europe.

Publications of the project:

Click here for more publications and information of the project.

Czech Republic: “You can go back to Bulgaria, anyway” Labour Rights Violations in Czechia
Italy: “Warehouse Workers: Exploitation and Struggles in the Italian Logistics Sector”
Germany: “The Meat Nightmare”
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