The European Parliament Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL) voted on new rules to reclassify platforms’ self-employed collaborators as digital platform employees. The Platform Workers Directive takes the right turn by limiting its scope to pure digital platform players.
IRU welcomes the EU’s initiative to put an end to practices that are contrary to European values and Member States’ well-established taxation and social security systems.
At the same time, it is encouraging to see that the members of EMPL drew the right line between true platforms and regular EU enterprises.
IRU Director of EU Advocacy Raluca Marian said, “We are very pleased to see that EMPL members are focused on the problem. The adopted text targets pure digital platforms, leaving regular EU businesses outside of its scope.
“The EU economy is a combination of traditional employment and self-employment, in balance and full respect of social and taxation models. This model should not be eliminated just because some new players are not keen on playing according to the rules. Instead, these new players should embrace the rules.”
MEPs also distinguished between ride-hailing digital labour platforms covered by the new rules and taxi dispatch services regulated under national laws.
“This is a big win for the EMPL Committee, commercial road transport operators and, especially, taxi dispatch centres. It is for the first time that, on an EU level, we see the recognition that taxi dispatch centres are not part of the ride-hailing industry,” Raluca Marian added.
While EMPL’s list of non-mandatory criteria to determine workers’ employment status is not ideal, IRU remains optimistic that the Council’s general approach and the upcoming negotiations will bring additional clarity. Criteria such as setting workers’ salaries, work hours and schedules, as well as tracking or supervising them, should be applied before establishing the presumption of employment.
“It remains our hope that the European Parliament and Council will reach a compromise that will result in a pragmatic text addressing self-employment and providing legal certainty to road transport operators when it comes to the legal presumption of employment,” Raluca Marian concluded.
In November, IRU, CEEMET, HOTREC, EBF-BCESA and ECEG – representing road transport, hospitality and the banking sector, as well as chemical, metal, engineering and technology-based industries – called upon MEPs to limit the scope of the Directive to true digital platforms, as well as to provide clear criteria for the reclassification of platform workers.