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Posting workers


2017 - ECMIN 2.0
1. Short description of the action
Temporary migration and in particular posting of workers is of vital importance in the construction sector since it has a highly mobile workforce. Lack of accessibility and transparency of the applicable working conditions has always been an important reason for reticence on the workers’ side to work in an EU Member State other than their own. And when they do take the decision to work in another member state, they often end up being trapped in jobs where they face sub-standard conditions which are below the legal minimum. In such cases, the generally acknowledged rule of “same wage for the same work at the same workplace” is violated on each building site at the detriment of the posted workers. For some years now, discussions on temporary mobility of workers have a prominent role in the EC policy making, amongst social partners and within the trade union movement. In 2014 the Enforcement Directive 2014/67/EC of the Posting of Workers directive came into force: the directive points out the importance of improved access to and transparency on the terms and conditions of employment within the different EU Member States in order to ensure the right application of the Directive 96/71/EC and thereby protecting the rights of posted workers. Following these recommendations the EFBWW decided to improve and update the existing European Construction mobility Information Net website, which was funded by DG employment in 2009, where construction workers could find information on working conditions in some EU Member States. With the ECMIN 2.0 project a new website (www.constructionworkers.eu) and APP (for mobile devices) have been created. With the ECMIN 2.0, construction workers can find information on salary, working time, premiums, holidays, wage deductions and sickness and injuries in their own language as the website is translated in all 24 official languages of the EU. In addition, contact details for each country are provided to enable the workers to ask for support or help. The contact persons are representatives of the EFBWW affiliated organisations which provided the information for each country and became part of the ECMIN network. As part of the project 2 website testing phases as well as one evaluation seminar were organized before the official launch. Relevant persons of the network were trained on how to update the data on their respective countries: in order to make sure that the website is timely updated, each organization/country will be in charge of it. The website was launched on 10 April 2017 Europe wide via the network. National partners distributed a common press release via their websites and social media, as well as via national press in order to reach out to as many stakeholders as possible (not only workers, but also local and national authorities, civil society organizations, etc. ).

2. Conclusions
The tools created through the ECMIN 2.0 (website and APP) are very important to ensure that construction workers are able to check whether the working conditions offered to them are up to standards and the principle “same pay for the same work in the same workplace” is respected. This action contributed directly to the enforcement of the EU legislation concerning posted workers and it can be considered a best practice also for other sectors at European and national level. The very high interest of external stakeholders and users around this experience proves this. Several stakeholders (researchers, Members of the European Parliament, representatives of other networks, etc.) have requested a presentation of the website on different occasions.
Considering the first experience - ECMIN 1.0 - the ECMIN 2.0 is easier to be updated and to be consulted and the ownership at national level is higher. But this does not mean that at central EFBWW level the work can be considered concluded: efforts will have to be made to keep the website updated and to further disseminate it among workers. Having a network which almost completely corresponds to the EFBWW affiliated organizations will be an advantage.
The effort to build such an instrument has not been negligible considering the number of countries and organizations involved, the complexity of the website functioning and its management system, the APP, as well as the translations in 24 languages. Thus, the financial support of the European Commission has been fundamental in order to achieve the results.

3. Policy follow-up
In order not to lose all the good results achieved and to make the ECMIN 2.0 tools even more useful and user friendly, a follow-up activity needs to be foreseen. This is why the EFBWW has applied for additional EC funding to carry out a follow up action: the ECMIN 3.0. Further efforts need to be made to fine tune the website and the APP and to further disseminate them among workers, authorities and other stakeholders. In addition to cover for the majority of construction workers working in the European continent, additional countries and languages will need to be added. Next to this and in order to keep the network organisations aware of the importance of investing time in the update of the ECMIN 2.0, the EFBWW will continuously work to remind affiliated organizations to work on it. Also in every possible occasion the EFBWW will promote the initiative among workers, authorities, civil society organizations, European policy makers, etc.

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