– having regard to Article 128(2) of the EC Treaty, pursuant to which the Council consulted Parliament (C6-0047/2006),
– having regard to Rule 51 of its Rules of Procedure,
– having regard to the report of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (A6-0086/2006),
1. Approves the Commission proposal as amended;
2. Calls on the Commission to alter its proposal accordingly, pursuant to Article 250(2) of the EC Treaty;
3. Calls on the Council to notify Parliament if it intends to depart from the text approved by Parliament;
4. Asks the Council to consult Parliament again if it intends to amend the Commission proposal substantially;
5. Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council and Commission.
Text proposed by the Commission
Amendments by Parliament
Amendment 1 Recital 1 a (new)
(1a) Following the new challenges set by enlargement of the EU in May 2004, the employment guidelines laid down for the period 2005-2008 have taken on particular importance and new implications for the employment of young and older people, workers" health, combating work-related accidents at European level, the integration of vulnerable social groups, combating social exclusion, outlawing illegal working, improving the quality and the stability of jobs and the establishment of equal rights and opportunities for men and women, which should be evaluated with indicators per guideline to measure progress in gender equality.
Amendment 2 Recital 1 b (new)
(1b) The Employment Guidelines cannot be implemented without the effective implementation of Community legislation by individual Member States, in particular that relating to anti-discrimination policy under Article 13 of the Treaty, and health and safety legislation. The Commission must improve its monitoring and enforcement procedure
Amendment 3 Recital 1 c (new)
(1c) Successful labour market integration requires an even greater variety of support measures which create channels for inclusion and combat discrimination.
Amendment 4 Recital 1 d (new)
(1d) According to the conclusions of the Spring European Council held on 22 and 23 March 2005, the objectives of full employment, job quality, labour productivity and social cohesion must be reflected in clear and measurable priorities: attracting and retaining more people in the labour market on the basis of the principles of equal opportunities and equal treatment of men and women and the modernisation of social protection systems; reducing administrative costs, particularly for small and medium-sized enterprises; improving the adaptability of workers and businesses and increasing the flexibility of working hours and labour markets; increasing investment in human capital by improving training and skills.
Amendment 5 Recital 1 e (new)
(1e) Further progress must be made in removing barriers and restrictions to people's freedom to move from one Member State to another (Guideline 21), particularly in the context of workers' mobility, including researchers and other professionals (Guideline 23) with a view to achieving a Europe without borders within the internal market and in order to put an end to the inconsistencies in this area generated by Council Directive 2003/109/EC of 25 November 2003 concerning the status of third-country nationals who are long-term residents1, which grants this right without restriction to third-country nationals who have been resident in the European Union for more than five years. __________________ 1 OJ L 16, 23.1.2004, p. 44.
Amendment 6 Recital 1 f (new)
(1f) As the employment guidelines cannot be followed without adequate funding the Member States should take these objectives into account when adopting the Financial Perspective 2007–2013.
Amendment 7 Recital 2
(2) The Employment Guidelines and the Broad Economic Policy Guidelines should be fully reviewed only every three years,
while in the intermediate years until 2008 their updating should remain strictly limited.
(2) In order to ensure that they enjoy the stability which they require if they are to be successfully implemented,
the Employment Guidelines and the Broad Economic Policy Guidelines should be fully reviewed only every three years,
while in the intermediate years until 2008 their updating should remain strictly limited. For this reason the European Parliament should play a more active role in the intermediate years, with particular regard to the monitoring of the Member States' implementation of the guidelines.
Amendment 8 Recital 3
(3) The examination of the Member States' National Reform Programmes contained in the Commission's Annual Progress Report and in the Joint Employment Report shows that Member States should proceed with employment policy reforms across the board in accordance with the priorities set out in the 2005-2008 Guidelines.
(3) The examination of the Member States' National Reform Programmes contained in the Commission's Annual Progress Report and in the Joint Employment Report shows that Member States should proceed with employment policy reforms across the board in accordance with the priorities set out in the 2005-2008 Guidelines. Member States and the Commission are reminded that gender mainstreaming and the promotion of gender equality should be ensured in all action taken, as equal opportunities and the combating of discrimination are essential for progress.
Amendment 9 Recital 4 a (new)
(4a) In order to promote economic growth and employment and boost competitiveness, Member States should announce their research, innovation and research development spending targets, as well as the measures they propose to take in respect of investment for the benefit of small and medium-sized enterprises and of micro-financing for women's and family-run businesses which use innovative forms of technology.