COMECE welcomes the new EU rules on Work-Life Balance allowing parents and carers to better reconcile their work and family lives. The agreement, which comes after three years of negotiations between the EU institutions, introduces minimum rules on paternity leave and supports EU citizens providing care to family members in need of assistance.

In a changing world of work and a demographic shift towards an aging society, the introduction of minimum rules on carers’ and paternity leave “is– according to COMECE General Secretary, fr. Olivier Poquillon, o.p., – an important step in view of a more people-centered economy”.

These new rules will help parents across Europe to cope with the twin challenges of professional career and family responsibilities in an ever-faster world of work.

Informal work to be recognised

It is the first time that EU law recognizes the informal work done by EU citizens, mostly women, that provide care to depended and elder family members in need of assistance.

“This is an important moment and we encourage the EU Member States to implement these new rules into their national legislative systems”, stated the COMECE General Secretary.

In November 2018 the COMECE Social Affairs Commission published the reflection “Shaping the Future of Work” suggesting to the EU 17 policy recommendations for a decent, sustainable and participatory world of work, including the protection of Sunday as a common weekly day of rest.