Opinion factsheet


    Work-life balance for parents and carers

    : CDR 3138/2017
    : SARRABEZOLLES, Nathalie
    : PES (Party of European Socialists)
    : SEDEC
    : Adopted
    : 30/11/2017

    - would argue that the responsibility for a suitable work-life balance is to be shared between workers, families, the social partners, local and regional authorities and all public and private employers and service providers;

    - acknowledges the role played by local and regional authorities in this area, given their competences in matters that affect daily family life, such as childcare, care for the elderly and people with disabilities, education, social services and employment. Multi-level governance is therefore important for the optimal implementation of the directive;

    - believes that work-life balance policies, including family leave, may contribute both to increasing employment rates of women and to higher fertility rates, leading to greater economic benefits for all. At the same time, it is important to ensure that family leave does not turn into a trap for women that further restricts their options on the labour market;

    - regrets that the scope of the directive is limited to workers with a contract of employment or an employment relationship and that it does not cover the various forms of atypical work, such as the self-employed;

    - regrets the lack of mention of the Barcelona objectives, which have not been met by all Member States, and efforts therefore need to be further stepped up to implement them;

    - points out that the European Semester is a powerful tool in the area of fiscal policy and that it could be very helpful in giving Member States guidance and recommendations concerning economic disincentives for second earners, and guidance on care services;

    - agrees with the proposal to grant paternity leave without prejudice to marital or family status, as defined in national law, to avoid any discrimination. It is a matter for the Member States to define the conditions of access and detailed arrangements for the application of parental leave where there are more than two applicants for such parental leave;

    - welcomes the proposal to produce more and better data and stresses the need to collect data at local and regional level, in order to be able to shape policies in a targeted and resource-efficient way.



Adoption of the opinion

The CoR Plenary adopted the final opinion

30 Nov

Rapporteur Participated in the 2017 Annual Colloquium on Fundamental Rights

The Rapporteur presented her opinion at the session "Women's economic empowerment: is it possible to close the gender pay gap?"

21 Nov

Territorial Impact Assessment

The CoR held a Territorial Impact Assessment (TIA) of the legislative proposal

11 Oct

Adoption of the draft opinion by the SEDEC commission

The SEDEC commission will discuss and adopt the draft opinion

28 Sep

Stakeholders consultation

The rapporteur meets stakeholders in Brussels for an exchange of views on the topic.

13 Jul

Appointment of Rapporteur

Nathalie Sarrabezolles (FR/PES) is appointed Rapporteur for the CoR opinion

08 Jun

Publication of European Commission's Documents

The European Commission presents a set of legislative and non-legislative actions to modernise the existing European Union legal and policy framework to support better work-life balance for men and women with caring responsibilities and a more equal use of leave and flexible work arrangements.

26 Apr