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This study examines the employment situation of parents with young children in the EU and specifically, the factors that affect parents’ return to the labour market. The paper identifies interventions that could help parents return to work after family-related leave and improve labour-market integration of unemployed or inactive parents. The study outlines possible additional actions at the EU level. This document was provided by Policy Department A at the request of the Employment and Social Affairs ...

This infographic aims to present the current maternity and paternity leave situation in EU Member States. Maternity leave policies in EU Member States are governed by the 1992 Pregnant Workers Directive. A new proposed directive on work-life balance, due to be voted on by Parliament in April 2019, is expected to introduce a mandatory period of paternity leave across the Union. Most EU countries also grant an additional period of parental leave, but parental leave is not covered in this infographic ...

This note seeks to provide an initial analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the European Commission impact assessment (IA) accompanying the above proposal, submitted on 26 April 2017 and referred to Parliament’s Committee on Employment and Social Affairs. The proposal is a follow-up to the withdrawal of the Commission's proposal to revise Council Directive 92/85/EEC (the Maternity Leave Directive). After the withdrawal, the Commission announced its intention to prepare a new initiative with ...

The EU has been working on reforming family leave policies in Member States since the 1980s. Its efforts resulted in two currently valid directives: the 1992 Maternity Leave Directive and the 2010 Parental Leave Directive. Even though EU Member States’ transposition of the current directives has been mostly satisfactory technically, in 2015 the Commission announced a package on work-life balance which would replace the current legislation. The rationale for the new package is increasing female labour ...

This infographic aims to present the current state of affairs of maternity and paternity leave in EU Member States. Maternity leave policies in EU Member States are governed by the 1992 Pregnant Workers Directive. After an unsuccessful attempt to introduce a new maternity leave directive, the Commission has announced a new, more holistic package as a replacement.

While gender equality policies have been institutionalized and consolidated in Spain until 2008, the 2009-2016 period shows backlash provoked by austerity policies adopted in response to the economic crisis. Institutional dismantlement, budget cuts, legislative standstill, policy reforms with negative gender impacts, and problems of implementation indicate an uncertain future for gender equality policies in Spain. This study maps developments in Spanish gender equality institutions, laws, and policies ...

Upon request by the FEMM Committee, the Policy Department has examined the Member States' different national legislations for maternity or parental leave for national members of Parliament. Furthermore, the rules concerning absence and leave for Members of the European Parliament have also been explored. The overview of the European and national rules provide insights in the different ways how maternity or parental leave is regulated for members of parliament at both levels. It concludes that the ...

Trends in female employment

Briefing 26-10-2015

Statistics and research results show that over the past decade, despite the economic and financial downturn, the EU's labour market has witnessed an increase in women's employment rates. Women's employment seems to be more resilient to the economic crisis then men's. This is partly due to long-term developments and institutional framework changes, as well as to women's tendency to work in particular sectors and accept flexible working arrangements (e.g. part-time work, teleworking). Despite the general ...

Upon request by the FEMM Committee, this paper explores changes in gender equality legislation, policies and practices in Ireland with particular emphasis on the period from 2012-2015. Gender equality infrastructure, gender gaps in employment, unemployment, poverty and pay rates are analysed and women’s level of participation in political, economic and administrative decision-making in Ireland is detailed. Provision of childcare services, as well as the extent to which gender dimensions are taken ...

The principle of equal pay is anchored in the EEC founding Treaty of 1957. Directive 2006/54/EC was a recast of secondary law dating back to 1975 pursuing gender equality in (access to) employment and it ‘consolidated’ case law in this area developed by the European Court of Justice. This European Implementation Assessment is based on input received from four independent groups of experts (included as annexes) on different aspects of the application of the Recast Directive: legal aspects and in ...