- 17 Sep 2012
Following massive opposition from a number of member states, the European Commission has decided to withdraw a proposal to regulate the right to strike
Following massive opposition from a number of member states, the European Commission has decided to withdraw a proposal to regulate the right to strike.
On 21 March 2012, the Commission introduced a proposal for a Council Regulation on the relationship between the right to strike on the one hand and the freedom of establishment and the freedom to provide services on the other hand. A number of countries opposed the proposal and the Commission was eventually given a so-called yellow card in May. A yellow card is when 12 countries notify the Commission in writing that they cannot accept a proposal. Denmark was among the countries opposing the proposal.
It was most likely the massive opposition which made the Commission withdraw its proposal.
Denmark opposed the proposal because it was not compatible with the EU subsidiarity principle, as there are already efficient mechanisms at the national level to settle disputes between the social partners.
If the proposal had been implemented, one of its consequences would have been that the Commission had to be warned of imminent strikes across borders and in case of serious conflicts and social unrest.
Norrbom Vinding notes
- that the right to strike is crucial to the Danish labour market model and Danish labour law; and
- that it seems an impossible task to align the industrial dispute rules of all 27 EU countries into a single set of rules, but it will be interesting to see if the Commission will try its luck with another proposal at a later stage.