European transport unions blast disastrous compromise

The EU Mobility Package is a massive reform of the rules governing road transport in Europe.

The impact of a bad deal on the wellbeing of drivers and the safety of all road users could be disastrous: less rest for tired drivers, longer periods away from home, and the legalisation of social dumping, wage discrimination and unfair competition.
Meeting ahead of the EU Transport Ministers’ Council of 3 December, where member states are planning to thrash out a final text, transport unions from across Europe have "made it clear" that they will not accept the current dangerous proposals. 

For the first time, after months of constructive engagement, workers say that no deal is better than a bad deal on the EU Mobility Package.
The European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) represents 5 million workers across Europe. 45 union leaders met in Brussels on 29-30 November for the ETF’s Executive Committee to discuss matters that concern transport workers. The Mobility Package was high on the agenda and the strength of feeling on the subject was clear.
On Friday, Frank Moreels, ETF President told this site,  “When the patient has diarrhoea, you don’t prescribe a laxative! After the worker abuse scandals we’ve seen in European road transport, we clearly need better enforcement of existing rules – not a botched compromise that makes the rules even more flexible. Just before the European elections, this kind of behaviour is a danger for public belief in the European Union.”
Roberto Parillo, ETF Road Section President also said: “The European Parliament twice rejected Mobility Package proposals, because MEPs listened to workers concerns. We have always been constructive and open to a decent compromise, but we cannot accept a deal that massively reduces drivers’ quality of life, legalises social dumping, and endangers all road users. Now the proposals are worse than ever, and we have to say STOP. We would rather see the Council fail to reach an agreement than pass a dangerous deal.”
Eduardo Chagas, ETF General Secretary commented: “The ETF does not understand the rush to reach an agreement which risks a clear decline in the drivers’ quality of work and life. It took two attempts to get a good proposal on the horizontal posting of workers directive. And the second time, it worked. The Mobility Package needs another attempt. Too much is at stake to give in to a compromise that will be so damaging in practice.”
ETF said in a statement, "We believe that the Council must not adopt a compromise that is un-enforceable and which fails to solve any of the problems the sector currently faces. We always supported the idea that EU road transport needs a major reform, and we always engaged constructively. But can we live without the Mobility Package? Life will be better for drivers if the Council fails to sign their rushed and dangerous deal."

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Martin Banks

Martin Banks

Martin Banks is a highly qualified journalist with many years experience of working within the EU institutions. He is an occasional, and highly valued, contributor to EU today, writing on a wide variety of issues.

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