Social Pillar – From proclamation to implementation

With the Proclamation of the European Pillar of Social Rights at the end of 2017, Europe has acquired a new instrument to realise a truly socially and economically just Europe. As a civil society network that has been advocating for years for European social standards, we consider this Pillar a cornerstone on the basis of which a more inclusive Europe can be built.

Through this edition of the Social Compass, you will understand why we think that the implementation of the Social Pillar can bring about the necessary policy changes on the condition that its ambitious agenda is reinforced by making full use of four key implementation ingredients, which are at the core of our position paper on the implementation of the Social Pillar. Read more in our blog “Building Social Europe 1/4 – Unlocking the Pillar’s potential through policy”.

One of these ingredients is the next EU budget; the design of a new multi-annual financial framework (MFF) is an opportunity to shift the balance of the EU budget towards people-centred policies that reflect European values, as highlighted in our President’s opinion piece for EurActiv “Reinvigorating Europe by investing in its people – vital role of EU budget”. We’ve also conveyed this message through our responses to public consultations launched by the European Commission on the MFF, which you can read more about in our blog post “Public consultation on the next EU budget – an opportunity for social cohesion”.

Other ingredients that are critical to the effective implementation the Social Pillar relate to governance and policy-making. With the release of the 2018 country reports as well as of the European Commission Fairness package, the Communication on the Pillar, the draft regulation of the European Labour Authority and the recommendation of access to social protection, much is on the table. In this edition of the Social Compass, we are pleased to share our preliminary assessment of the first country reports released since the proclamation of the Social Pillar last November in Gothenburg: read our blog “2018 country reports – A step in the right direction” for more details.

A final ingredient is the participation of civil society in the framework of civil dialogue. Over the next two years we will cooperate with researchers to better inform EU policies and public debates in the field of migration. To this end, Social Platform is partnering in the project ReSOMA, which you can read about in our blog “ReSOMA – Research Social Platform on Migration and Asylum”.

In the coming weeks, the European Commission is organising meetings linking the Social Pillar, the European Semester and the role of civil society. We welcome these developments and hope that these initiatives will become lead decision-makers towards more structured dialogue with civil society organisations active in the social field.

Best wishes,

Kélig Puyet, Director of Social Platform