CEEP represented today employers of public services and services of general interest at the Social Summit for Fair Jobs and Growth. Valeria Ronzitti (CEEP General Secretary), Ivailo Kalfin (Member of the National Council of BICA, CEEP Bulgaria) and Sergio Gasparrini (ARAN President, CEEP Italy) made the case for the key role that efficient and effective public services can play in the construction of a Social Europe. CEEP Sweden, represented by Lena Micko (President of SALAR), Eva Liedström Adler (Director General of SAGE) and Ulf Olsson (President of CEEP Sweden), reinforced the CEEP positioning by bringing in the voice of the well organised and effective Swedish public sector, where social dialogue and collective bargaining play a great role.

Already yesterday, during an extraordinary meeting of the EU institutions with the social partners, the CEEP delegation had the opportunity to deliver its message.

Valeria Ronzitti, CEEP General Secretary, said:

 “For us, employers of public services, this Social Summit is the opportunity to demonstrate the business case for Social Europe: economic and social progress must now go together. It is more than needed, as our services are at the core of sustainable growth, territorial cohesion and social inclusion.”

Eva Liedström Adler, Director General of SAGE (Swedish Agency for Government Employers), emphasised the central role of social dialogue:

“Social dialogue must be based on trust capacity and political will. Trust must exist between employers and unions. But trust must also be given to the social partners by governments and the EU institutions by means of autonomy and support in capacity building. Social dialogue sometimes take time but given trust and capacity, social dialogue delivers!”

Today, at the Social Summit, CEEP representatives played an active role in the parallel sessions.

Lena Micko, President of SALAR (Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions), presented the positions of Swedish employers of public services on gender equality and the integration of arrived migrants, as key elements for sustainable growth and employment. She emphasized more specifically the importance of early initiatives to speed up the process of moving migrants with education and experience into jobs in understaffed professions.

Valeria Ronzitti, CEEP General Secretary, presented CEEP views on the topic “In between jobs: supporting transitions”, emphasising the importance of investing in skills: skilling, re-skilling and up-skilling are more than just buzzwords. Investing in skills is key to increase flexibility and support the digital transition. However, employers cannot do it alone: We need investments in our education systems, we need to use the Plan Juncker 2.0 to invest in human capital, as suggest by President Macron, and we need a focus on employability instead of being obsessed by the need for exact anticipation of skills needs. Finally, we need a workforce ready to embrace change and that is why we need effective social dialogue.”

On the occasion of the Social Summit, CEEP also signed two joint declarations:

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