E-bulletin 04 April 2011 – Working Time Regs

Working Time Regulations Update
(Second-phase consultation of the social partners at European level under Article 154 TFEU)

Members will remember that in 2008 the RFU was at the forefront of a campaign to preserve the UK Opt-Out which culminated in a failure to agree on its removal.

We stated at the time that we are fully aware that the European Parliament will look to submit further proposals to amend the Working Time Directive sometime in the future and this process began in march 2010 where the Commission invited ‘social partners’ to indicate their experience with the current directive and to outline working time rules that will be needed in the future.
‘Social partners’ is a term generally used in Europe to refer to representatives of management and labour (employers’ organisations and trade unions). The term ‘European social partners’ specifically refers to those organisations at EU level which are engaged in the European social dialogue, as provided for under Article 138 and 139 EC.   Source: http://www.eurofound.europa.eu/areas/industrialrelations/dictionary/definitions/EUROPEANSOCIALPARTNERS.htm

The RFU has therefore provided the commission with our views as part of this consultation and our submission is attached for your information. We have also provided a copy to the UK Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) and Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG).

It goes without saying that once again the RFU remains committed to protecting the interests of RDS personnel. We see it as an urgent matter of priority to ensure that any fundamental review of working time does not prejudice the smooth operation of the RDS and that appropriate flexibilities for retaining the use of the opt out, must continue.

RFU Response

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