During their meeting on 9 and 10 December, the Ministers of Employment and Social Affairs of the European Union adopted some encouraging conclusions.
Firstly, regarding the objective of inclusive labour markets, they highlighted “the economic value of providing better employment opportunities to people in a vulnerable position in the labour market”, including “people with caring responsibilities”. Reference was also made to the gender pay gap, recognised as “a serious challenge”.
Besides, Ministers stated “the ambition of member states to achieve better work-life balance”: a welcome reminder of the need to ensure a swift transposition of the Work Life Balance Directive, as part of ambitious national strategies for carers!
Let’s hope that these positive commitments will encourage further national policies supporting informal carers in their efforts to access or remain in employment, and carer friendly workplaces. They also make the case for European Funds to support such policies.
See the Council conclusions here: https://www.consilium.europa.eu/media/41736/st14932-en19.pdf
*Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council