Today, on 2 February 2023, European Parliament in the plenary vote approved the EMPL committee report on the Directive on improving working conditions in platform work (376 votes in favour, 212 against, 15 abstentions). This opens the way for the EMPL Committee to enter into interinstitutional negotiations with the EU Council.  

The EMPL committee report overall represents a strong step forward towards a more level playing field for businesses and better working conditions for workers, as we previously discussed here, in particular:  

  • It recognises cooperatives and calls on the Member States to “protect and promote cooperative undertakings”. It also has an inclusive definition of workers’ representatives, who have specific role according to the directive, so worker-owned cooperatives may be covered by this definition 
  • It foresees measures to ensure fair classification of platform workers: genuine self-employed will remain self-employed, but de facto employees will be able to get recognised as such
  • If all platforms correctly define the status of their workers, this will ensure level playing field and fair competition for cooperative platforms
  • Algorithmic management will be more transparent and fairer
  • Platforms will not be able to avoid their legal responsibilities by creating fake subcontractors and outsourcing responsibility towards the workers  

"We defend the workers, we defend the good employers and fair competition" – Elisabetta Gualmini, MEP, at the plenary session of the European Parliament  

Platform employment is constantly growing – according to European Commission’s estimates, 28 million people in the EU worked through digital labour platforms, and this number will reach 43 million by 2025. A number of cooperatives have been created to address the insecurities workers face when dealing with the large capitalistic platforms who do not respect their rights. CECOP therefore congratulates MEP Elisabetta Gualmini, author of the EMPL committee report, and thanks all MEPs who voted for a better regulation of platform work.   

The next step towards the adoption of the Directive will be interinstitutional negotiations with the EU Council. The Council has not agreed on a joint position yet; the next high-level discussion on the file is expected at the EPSCO Council in March.