Legal regulation for online platform work: Pressure on the EU Commission is growing

The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) and several EU ministers have increased the pressure on the EU Commission to improve working conditions for Internet platform workers. In an open letter to EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen on Monday, they called for a resolute European legislative initiative. Working hours are often long, and on some platforms “significant” gender pay gaps and other forms of discrimination are “either tolerated or increased by algorithmic bias,” it said. According to the information, the letter was also signed by Labor Minister Hubertus Heil (SPD) and his colleagues from Belgium, Spain, Portugal and Italy.

Work on online platforms has increased, for example with food delivery, transport services and household services. “These companies attract vulnerable groups who are forced to accept low pay or someone else will take the job,” the letter said. Employees on digital platforms often do not even receive the minimum wage and are often not adequately insured.

In December, the EU Commission wants to present a guideline to improve working conditions. Specifically, the ETUC called for the platforms to be obliged to register with a public authority and to make the most important data about their activities transparent. In addition, it must be ensured that the same rules apply to platform companies as to all other companies that work across borders – with regard to labor, social and tax law.


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