"The COVID-19 health crisis has forced employees all over Europe into working from home. While it is positive that the new digital tools allow working from a distance, too often it goes hand-in-hand with the expectation to always be connected and reachable, far more than working time regulations ask for", stated Tomáš Zdechovský MEP, EPP Group lead negotiator on the Report entitled 'The right to disconnect', which will be debated by Members of the European Parliament this afternoon.
"Working time regulations, like the EU Working Time Directive, exist for a reason. The ‘always on’ culture has to have limits. However, the right regulation on a right to disconnect is not easy", said Zdechovský, Vice-Chair of the European Parliament’s Employment and Social Affairs Committee. "We have to be careful not to interfere with measures actually beneficial for the employees. There are also many employees that appreciate the flexibility these new working methods bring. We now need to give employers and employees the chance of appropriate self-regulation", added Zdechovský.
"It is the task of the social partners to come up with solutions before legislative action is taken. Hence, the EPP Group welcomes the Framework Agreement of the European Social Partners. They pledge to come up with common measures on connecting and disconnecting within the next three years. We will closely monitor the social partners’ progress", concluded Tomáš Zdechovský.
Note to editors
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 187 Members from all EU Member States