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EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level policy measures

Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure EU-2020-27/1088 – measures in European Union

EU social partners in central governments' sector call for investing in public sector staff

Country European Union , applies eu-wide (or beyond)
Time period Open ended, started on 30 June 2020
Context COVID-19
Type Non-binding recommendations or other texts
Category Protection of workers, adaptation of workplace
– Well-being of workers
Author Barbara Surdykowska and Eurofound
Measure added 10 September 2020 (updated 18 September 2020)

Background information

On 9 July social partners for central government administration reached a joint statement on COVID- 19 and its aftermath. The parties to the statement are: the EU Public Administration Employers Platform (EUPAE) and Trade Unions' National and European Administration Delegation (TUNED) composed of European Confederation of Independent Trade Unions (CESI) and European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU) representatives. The statement was agreed within the Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee for Central Government administrations established on 17 September 2010.

Content of measure

As the lock-downs are being gradually lifted and in view of ensuring a safe recovery and prevent new waves of the pandemic, social partners point out the following i.a.:

  • As part of continued government efforts to suppress, control and prevent the lethal virus, a greater focus should be placed on occupational safety, health and inequalities as an integral part of public health and an effective response to health emergencies
  • the key role of public administration in dealing with the pandemic should be recognized; once again it has been well proven that public administration is an asset supporting governments, citizens and businesses
  • it must be ensured that public sector workers must be valued as part of the economic recovery and that therefore public investment in the public sector and its staff will be critical to reducing inequalities and unemployment and to social, environmental and economic development. recovery
  • in connection with the above, the importance of budgetary stability for the proper functioning of a democratic welfare state is essential
  • the best way to protect citizens using public administration institutions is to protect employees and civil servants entrusted with the task of caring; therefore these workers must be given priority with regard to protective equipment
  • the proposal to give legal force to the EU social partners' agreement on information and consultation of employees in central administration is particularly relevant in the present situation
  • there is an urgent need to learn lessons from the development of teleworking and the use of digital tools during a pandemic, this should be done in consultation with employee representatives.

Use of measure

The statement concerns central government staff in the Member States.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Workers in essential services
Does not apply to businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
EU level social partners
No special funding required

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative
Form Consultation through tripartite or bipartite social dialogue bodies Consultation through tripartite or bipartite social dialogue bodies

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Social partners jointly
  • Main level of involvement: EU level


The statement is an independent joint initiative of social partners representing the central administration sector. Employers 'side: EUPAE, trade unions' side: TUNED - joint union representation of EPSU and CESI.

Views and reactions

Social partners are supportive to their own statement.

Sectors and occupations

    • Economic area Sector (NACE level 2)
      O - Public Administration And Defence; Compulsory Social Security O84 Public administration and defence; compulsory social security

This case is not occupation-specific.


  • 09 July 2020: Statement on Covid-19 and its aftermath by EU social partners in central governments: investing in public sector staff (


Eurofound (2020), EU social partners in central governments' sector call for investing in public sector staff, measure EU-2020-27/1088 (measures in European Union), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.