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2021/0414(COD) Improving working conditions of persons working through digital labour platforms

Progress: Awaiting Council's 1st reading position

RoleCommitteeRapporteurShadows
Lead EMPL GUALMINI Elisabetta (icon: S&D S&D) RADTKE Dennis (icon: EPP EPP), ĎURIŠ NICHOLSONOVÁ Lucia (icon: Renew Renew), VAN SPARRENTAK Kim (icon: Verts/ALE Verts/ALE), LIZZI Elena (icon: ID ID), ZALEWSKA Anna (icon: ECR ECR), CHAIBI Leila (icon: GUE/NGL GUE/NGL)
Committee Opinion TRAN DELLI Karima (icon: Verts/ALE Verts/ALE) Peter LUNDGREN (icon: ECR ECR), Tilly METZ (icon: Verts/ALE Verts/ALE), José Ramón BAUZÁ DÍAZ (icon: RE RE), Leila CHAIBI (icon: GUE/NGL GUE/NGL), Gheorghe FALCĂ (icon: PPE PPE)
Lead committee dossier:
Legal Basis:
TFEU 116-p2, TFEU 153-p1, TFEU 153-p2

Events

2024/04/24
   EP - Text adopted by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading
Documents
2024/04/24
   EP - Decision by Parliament, 1st reading
2024/03/19
   EP - Approval in committee of the text agreed at 1st reading interinstitutional negotiations
Documents
2024/03/11
   CSL - Coreper letter confirming interinstitutional agreement
2024/03/11
   EP - Text agreed during interinstitutional negotiations
Documents
2023/02/02
   EP - Results of vote in Parliament
2023/02/02
   EP - Committee decision to enter into interinstitutional negotiations confirmed by plenary (Rule 71 - vote)
2023/01/16
   EP - Committee decision to enter into interinstitutional negotiations announced in plenary (Rule 71)
2022/12/23
   EP - Committee report tabled for plenary, 1st reading
Details

The Committee on Employment and Social Affairs adopted the report by Elisabetta GUALMINI (S&D, IT) on the proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on improving working conditions in platform work.

The committee responsible recommended that the European Parliament's position adopted at first reading under the ordinary legislative procedure should amend the proposal as follows:

Correct determination of the employment status

The report stated that Member States should have appropriate and effective procedures in place to verify and ensure the correct determination of the employment status of persons performing platform work, with a view to applying the presumption of an employment relationship for the purpose of ascertaining the existence of such a relationship as defined by applicable law, collective agreements or practice in force in the Member States.

Legal presumption

A person performing platform work should be either a platform worker or a genuinely self-employed person . The contractual relationship between a digital labour platform and a person performing platform work through that platform should be legally presumed to be an employment

relationship and therefore digital labour platforms should be presumed to be employers. To that effect, Member States should establish a framework of measures, in accordance with their national legal and judicial systems, in order to ensure that the legal presumption can be relied upon

by competent authorities and bodies that verify compliance with or enforce relevant legislation as well as by persons performing platform work and their representatives.

Member States should provide for an inspection by labour inspectorates or the bodies responsible for the enforcement of labour law every time a person performing platform work is newly recognised as platform worker, within one month of such recognition, in order to verify the status of the other persons performing platform work for the same digital labour platform.

Algorithmic management

Members consider that the use of algorithmic scheduling systems heightens the use of precarious, short shifts and unstable and unpredictable schedules. Algorithm-based technologies may produce power imbalances and opacity about decision-making, as well as technology-enabled surveillance which could exacerbate discriminatory practices and entail risks for privacy, workers´ health and safety and human dignity and may lead to adverse consequences for working conditions and the exploitation of workers.

Algorithmic management that entails automated decision-making that has significant effects on individuals without input from human managers is unlawful under Union law

Human oversight of automated systems

The committee report stresses, in this regard, that Member States should ensure that digital labour platforms provide for human oversight of all decisions affecting working conditions. Digital labour platforms should evaluate the risk of discrimination resulting from decisions taken by those systems, including in replicating gender, racial and other social biases in the selection and treatment of different groups.

Human review of decisions significantly affecting working conditions

Member States should ensure that platform workers have the right to receive an explanation from the digital labour platform for any decision taken or supported by an automated decision-making system that significantly affects the platform worker’s working conditions. The explanation should be presented in a transparent and intelligible manner, using clear and plain language in due time and at the latest on the first day of application of the decision.

Cooperation in cross-border cases

The report states that competent labour, social protection and tax authorities should exchange information with respect to persons performing platform work in a Member State different from that in which the digital labour platform is established. For cases having a cross-border relevance, the European Labour Authority should facilitate and support cooperation between the competent national authorities in charge of monitoring the enforcement of labour mobility and social security coordination legislation.

Subcontracting liability

In order to prevent undeclared work as well as the misuse of subcontracting (such as rented identities to migrants or minors) as a means by which to circumvent this Directive, Member States should introduce legal provisions on subcontracting that provide for joint and several liability and effective access to redress across subcontracting chains, ensuring that the contractors in a subcontracting chain may be held liable to pay wages, social security contributions and financial penalties in addition to or in place of the direct employer.

Documents
2022/12/12
   EP - Vote in committee, 1st reading
2022/12/12
   EP - Committee decision to open interinstitutional negotiations with report adopted in committee
2022/10/24
   FR_SENATE - Contribution
Documents
2022/10/10
   EP - Committee opinion
Documents
2022/10/03
   EP - DELLI Karima (Verts/ALE) appointed as rapporteur in TRAN
2022/06/10
   EP - Amendments tabled in committee
Documents
2022/06/10
   EP - Amendments tabled in committee
Documents
2022/06/10
   EP - Amendments tabled in committee
Documents
2022/05/03
   EP - Committee draft report
Documents
2022/03/23
   ESC - Economic and Social Committee: opinion, report
Documents
2022/02/02
   EP - GUALMINI Elisabetta (S&D) appointed as rapporteur in EMPL
2022/01/17
   EP - Committee referral announced in Parliament, 1st reading
2021/12/09
   EC - Document attached to the procedure
Documents
2021/12/09
   EC - Document attached to the procedure
2021/12/09
   EC - Document attached to the procedure
2021/12/09
   EC - Document attached to the procedure
2021/12/09
   EC - Legislative proposal published
Details

PURPOSE: to improve the working conditions of people working through digital platforms.

PROPOSED ACT: Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council.

ROLE OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT: the European Parliament decides in accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure and on an equal footing with the Council.

BACKGROUND: the digital transition, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, is shaping the EU economy and its labour markets. Digital labour platforms have become an important part of this emerging new social and economic landscape. Today, more than 28 million people in the EU work through digital labour platforms, and it is estimated that there will be 43 million by 2025.

It is estimated that nine out of ten platforms active in the EU currently are estimated to classify people working through them as self-employed. While most of these people are truly autonomous in their work, many are in a subordinate relationship to the platforms , for example in terms of pay levels or working conditions.

Digital labour platforms use automated systems to match supply and demand for work. These practices, often referred to as ‘algorithmic management’, sometimes mask the existence of subordination and control by the digital labour platform over the people doing the work. It is also felt that difficulties in enforcement and lack of traceability and transparency, particularly in cross-border situations, sometimes exacerbate poor working conditions or inadequate access to social protection.

This proposal follows the Commission's commitment to examine ‘ways to improve the labour conditions of platform workers’ and supports the implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights Action Plan.

CONTENT: the proposal aims to improve the working conditions of persons performing work via a platform by: (i) ensuring a correct employment status; (ii) promoting transparency, fairness and accountability in the algorithmic management of platform work and (iii) improving the transparency of platform work, including in cross-border situations.

Employment status

The proposed directive aims to ensure that people performing work through digital platforms are granted the legal employment status corresponding to their actual working arrangements. It provides a list of criteria for checking whether the platform is an ‘employer’ . If the platform meets at least two of these criteria, it would be legally presumed to be an employer.

Those who, as a result of correct determination of their employment status, will be recognised as workers will enjoy improved working conditions – including health and safety, employment protection, statutory or collectively bargained minimum wages and access to training opportunities – and gain access to social protection according to national rules.

The proposal also provides for a legal presumption of an employment relationship (including a reversal of the burden of proof) for persons working through digital labour platforms that control certain elements of the performance of work. Platforms would be allowed to rebut this legal presumption but would then have to prove the absence of an employment relationship under national definitions.

This framework is expected to benefit both the false and the genuine self-employed working through digital labour platforms.

Algorithmic management

The proposal ensures the right to transparency regarding the use and operation of automated monitoring and decision-making systems, as well as human monitoring of the impact of automated systems on working conditions, so as to protect workers' fundamental rights and health and safety at work. It also provides for appropriate channels to discuss and request a review of automated decisions. These new rights will be granted to both employed and genuinely self-employed workers.

Enforcement, transparency and traceability

The proposal aims to improve transparency and traceability of platform work to support competent authorities in enforcing existing rights and obligations in relation to working conditions and social protection. It clarifies the obligation of digital labour platforms which are employers to declare platform work to the competent authorities of the Member State where it is performed.

The proposed Directive will also improve labour and social protection authorities’ knowledge of which digital labour platforms are active in their Member State by giving those authorities access to relevant basic information on the number of people working through digital labour platforms, their employment status and their standard terms and conditions.

The Commission estimates that actions to tackle the risk of misclassification should lead to between 1.72 and 4.1 million people being reclassified as employees. 484 million, as they would be covered by sectoral laws and/or collective agreements.

Documents

  • Text adopted by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading: T9-0330/2024
  • Approval in committee of the text agreed at 1st reading interinstitutional negotiations: PE759.913
  • Coreper letter confirming interinstitutional agreement: GEDA/A/(2024)001446
  • Text agreed during interinstitutional negotiations: PE759.913
  • Results of vote in Parliament: Results of vote in Parliament
  • Committee report tabled for plenary, 1st reading: A9-0301/2022
  • Contribution: COM(2021)0762
  • Committee opinion: PE732.626
  • Amendments tabled in committee: PE732.875
  • Amendments tabled in committee: PE732.905
  • Amendments tabled in committee: PE732.906
  • Committee draft report: PE731.497
  • Economic and Social Committee: opinion, report: CES0256/2022
  • Document attached to the procedure: SEC(2021)0581
  • Document attached to the procedure: EUR-Lex
  • Document attached to the procedure: SWD(2021)0395
  • Document attached to the procedure: EUR-Lex
  • Document attached to the procedure: SWD(2021)0396
  • Document attached to the procedure: EUR-Lex
  • Document attached to the procedure: SWD(2021)0397
  • Legislative proposal published: COM(2021)0762
  • Legislative proposal published: EUR-Lex
  • Document attached to the procedure: SEC(2021)0581
  • Document attached to the procedure: EUR-Lex SWD(2021)0395
  • Document attached to the procedure: EUR-Lex SWD(2021)0396
  • Document attached to the procedure: EUR-Lex SWD(2021)0397
  • Economic and Social Committee: opinion, report: CES0256/2022
  • Committee draft report: PE731.497
  • Amendments tabled in committee: PE732.875
  • Amendments tabled in committee: PE732.905
  • Amendments tabled in committee: PE732.906
  • Committee opinion: PE732.626
  • Coreper letter confirming interinstitutional agreement: GEDA/A/(2024)001446
  • Text agreed during interinstitutional negotiations: PE759.913
  • Text adopted by Parliament, 1st reading/single reading: T9-0330/2024
  • Contribution: COM(2021)0762

Votes

Amélioration des conditions de travail dans le cadre du travail via une plateforme - Improving working conditions in platform work - Verbesserung der Arbeitsbedingungen in der Plattformarbeit - A9-0301/2022 - Elisabetta Gualmini - Décision d'engager des négociations interinstitutionnelles #

2023/02/02 Outcome: +: 376, -: 212, 0: 15
FR IT PT BE ES IE SI NL MT LU DE HR FI SK DK CY AT EE LV RO EL HU LT BG CZ PL SE
Total
69
63
19
19
52
10
8
25
5
5
89
10
9
13
12
2
17
4
7
29
16
17
9
13
18
47
16
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1

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1

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1

Latvia S&D

2

Greece S&D

1

Lithuania S&D

2

Czechia S&D

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1
icon: Verts/ALE Verts/ALE
63

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2

Portugal Verts/ALE

1

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3

Ireland Verts/ALE

2

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3

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1

Finland Verts/ALE

2

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2

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3

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1

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3

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3
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1

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1

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1

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145

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A9-0301/2022 – Elisabetta Gualmini – Provisional agreement – Am 187 #

2024/04/24 Outcome: +: 554, -: 56, 0: 24
FR DE IT ES PL RO PT HU BG EL FI BE IE NL AT HR LT LV DK SK SI CZ LU MT EE SE
Total
75
89
57
58
44
28
21
16
16
14
14
21
12
28
17
12
10
8
14
13
8
21
6
4
7
21
icon: PPE PPE
160

Hungary PPE

1

Denmark PPE

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1

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4

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1

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1
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127

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3

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Sweden Verts/ALE

3
icon: Renew Renew
98

Poland Renew

1

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1

Bulgaria Renew

2

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1

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3

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2

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AmendmentsDossier
1038 2021/0414(COD)
2022/06/10 EMPL 860 amendments...