European Social Charter

The European Social Charter is a Council of Europe treaty which guarantees social and economic human rights. It was adopted in 1961 and revised in 1996.
The European Committee of Social Rights rules on the conformity of the situation in States with the European Social Charter, the 1988 Additional Protocol and the Revised European Social Charter.


FOCUS

Conference on the future of the protection of social rights in Europe (Brussels, 12-13 February 2015)

Within the framework of the Belgian Presidency of the Council of Europe the Federal Public Service Social Security 2015 and the Federal Public Service Employment, Labour and Social Dialogue, in cooperation with the Council of Europe, will organise the 12th and 13th of February a conference on the theme "The Future of the Protection of Social Rights in Europe" in Brussels. For more information, please visite the website of the Council of Europe www.coe.int/turinprocess



NEWS

The decision on the merits adopted by the European Committee of Social Rights in the complaint Association for the Protection of All Children (APPROACH) Ltd v. France is public

[04/03/2015] The decision of the European Committee on Social Rights on the merits of the complaint Association for the Protection of All Children (APPROACH) Ltd v. France, Complaint No. 92/2013 became public on 4 March 2015 and is now available on line. In its decision, the Committee holds that there is no sufficiently clear, binding and precise prohibition of corporal punishment set out in French law, contrary to Article 17 of the Charter (the right of mothers and children to social and economic protection). . (more information)
Decision on the merits No. 92/2013
Collective complaints website

The decision on the merits adopted by the European Committee of Social Rights in the complaint Finnish Society of Social Rights v. Finland is public.

[11/02/2015] The decision of the European Committee on Social Rights on the merits of the complaint Finnish Society of Social Rights v. Finland, Complaint No. 88/2012 became public on 11 February 2015 and is now available on line. It relates to the right to social security (Article 12 of the Charter). (more information)
Decision on the merits No. 88/2012
Collective complaints website

Presentation of the General Report of the High-level Conference on the European Social Charter (Turin, 17-18 October 2014) by M. Michele Nicoletti, Vice-President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, General Rapporteur of the Conference, to the Committee of Ministers. For more information, see the Council of Europe website http://www.coe.int/en/web/portal/-/european-social-charter

European Committee of Social Rights publishes its Conclusions for 2014

[22/01/2015] In 2014 the European Committee of Social Rights examined national reports submitted by the States Parties on the articles of the Charter relating to labour rights (Articles 2, 4, 5, 6, 21, 22, 26, 28 and 29) . The Committee adopted the conclusions regarding these articles at its session in December 2014 and introduced them to the Press on 22 January 2015. These conclusions are now public and are available here on the Social Charter website.

European Committee of Social Rights elects Giuseppe Palmisano as its president

[22/01/2015]  On 20 January 2015, during its 276th session, the European Committee of Social Rights elected its new Bureau for a period of two years. Giuseppe Palmisano was elected as new President of the Committee, Monika Schlachter and Petros Stangos were re-elected as Vice-presidents and finally Lauri Leppik was elected as the new General Rapporteur. The Bureau held its first meeting in this composition on 21 January 2015.

Launch of a new HUDOC Social Charter case-law database

[22/01/2015]  On the occasion of the publication of the European Committee of Social Rights’ Conclusions 2014, the Executive Secretary of the Committee, Régis Brillat, announced the launch of a new HUDOC Social Charter case-law database. The new database, set up in cooperation with the Registry of the European Court of Human Rights, provides enhanced research tools with an enriched yet simple to use interface and already contains the Conclusions published today.

The decision on admissibility in the case Associazione Nazionale Giudici di Pace v. Italy, Complaint No. 102/2013, has been adopted

[13/01/2015]  The European Committee of Social Rights adopted the decision on admissibility at its last session on 2 December 2014 with regard to the case Associazione Nazionale Giudici di Pace v. Italy, Complaint No. 102/2013. The decision is now available on line. The complaint relates to Article 12 (right to social security) of the European Social Charter. The complainant organisation, Associazione Nazionale Giudici di Pace (the National Association of Justices of the Peace), alleges that Italian law does not provide any social security and welfare protection for this category of honorary Judges, in violation of the Charter provision relied on. (more information)
Decision on admissibility No. 102/2013   Collective complaints website

Participation to the Fundamental Rights Conference 2014 focused on migration

[08/12/2014] On 11 November 2014, M. Petros Stangos, Vice-President of the European Committee of Social Rights, represented the Committee on a Panel entitled “Protection of children in the context of migration” in Rome, Italy, at the Fundamental Rights Conference 2014, flagship event of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), which was dedicated this year to the fundamental rights challenges in the area of asylum, border and migrant integration.  
Programme
Conference Conclusions


The decisions on the merits adopted by the European Committee of Social Rights in the cases Conference of European Churches (CEC) v. The Netherlands (No. 90/2013) and European Federation of National Organisations working with the Homeless (FEANTSA) v. The Netherlands (86/2012) are now public.

[10/11/2014] The decisions of the European Committee on Social Rights on the merits of the complaints Conference of European Churches (CEC) v. The Netherlands, Complaint No. 90/2013, and European Federation of National Organisations working with the Homeless (FEANTSA) v. The Netherlands, became public on 10 March 2014 and are now available on line. Complaint No. 90/2013 concerns the fundamental social rights of undocumented adults (more information) and Complaint No. 86/2012 deals with the homeless and access to shelter. (more information)
Decision on the merits No. 90/2013 Decision on the merits No. 86/2012
Collective complaints website

The Committee of Ministers adopts changes to the reporting and monitoring system with respect to the European Social Charter

On 2 April 2014, the Committee of Ministers adopted changes to the reporting and monitoring system with respect to the European Social Charter. The changes are to be put in place with immediate effect. The most important aim of the changes is to simplify the national reporting mechanism for State Parties having accepted the collective complaints procedure. (more information Streamlining and improving the reporting and monitoring system of the European Social Charter Decision of the Committee of Ministers 

European Committee of Social Rights


Session of the European Committee of Social Rights in Strasbourg
The 277th  session of the European Committee of Social Rights will be held in Strasbourg from 16 to 20 March 2015.

Synopsis of the 276th  session

Agenda of the 277th  session
 


Exchanges of view with the Committee
Activity reports


Collective Complaints


A 113rd complaint has been lodged before the European Committee of Social Rights

- Unione Italiana del Lavoro U.I.L. Scuola – Sicilia v. Italy, Complaint No. 113/2014
The complainant trade union, Unione Italiana del Lavoro U.I.L. Scuola – Sicilia, lodged a complaint against Ireland which was registered on 14 November 2014. Its relates to Articles 12, 25 and E of the European Social Charter. The complainant trade union alleges that the Italian regulations on social protection - particularly the Interministerial Decree No. 83473 of 1 August 2014 - by excluding, in Sicily, the employees of the training sector from the system of the redundancy fund , La Cassa Integrazione Guadagni in deroga (paying cash salary supplements), violates the aforementioned provisions of the Charter. Complaint No. 113/2014 (Italian only) Collective complaints website

A 112th complaint has been lodged before the European Committee of Social Rights

- European Organisation of Military Associations (EUROMIL) v. Ireland, Complaint No. 112/2014
The European Organisation of Military Associations (EUROMIL) lodged a complaint against Ireland which was registered on 4 November 2014. Its relates to Articles 5 and 6 of the European Social Charter. The complainant organisation alleges that Defence Forces representative associations in Ireland do not have full trade unions rights including the right to join an unbrella organisation. Complaint No. 112/2014 Collective complaints website

The Committee of Ministers adopted a new resolution

[13/10/2014] At the 1209th meeting of the Ministers' Deputies on 8 October 2014, the Committee of Ministers adopted Resolution CM/Res ChS (2014)12, following the decision on admissibility and the merits adopted on 02/12/2012 by the European Committee on Social Rights on the Complaint No. 83/2012 European Confederation of Police (EUROCOP) c. Ireland (more information).

A 111th complaint has been lodged before the European Committee of Social Rights

- Greek General Confederation of Labour (GSEE) v. Greece, Complaint No. 111/2014
The Greek General Confederation of Labour (GSEE), lodged a complaint against Greece which was registered on 26 September 2014. Its relates to Articles 1, 2, 4 and 7 of the 1961 Charter, as well as Article 3 of the 1988 Additional Protocol. The complaint concerned some of the new legislation adopted during the crisis in Greece which, in the view of GSEE, affects workers’ rights in a manner that is contrary to the Charter. Complaint No. 111/2014 Collective complaints website

A 110th complaint has been lodged before the European Committee of Social Rights

- International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) v. Ireland, Complaint No. 110/2014
The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) lodged a complaint against Ireland which was registered on 18 July 2014. Its relates to Articles 11, 16, 17, 30 and E of the European Social Charter. The complaint deals with the situation in Ireland as regards law, policy and practices on social housing. Complaint No. 110/2014 Collective complaints website

Five resolutions are adopted by the Committee of Ministers

At the 1204th meeting of the Ministers' Deputies on 2 July 2014, the Committee of Ministers adopted Resolutions CM/ResChS(2014)7, CM/ResChS(2014)8, CM/ResChS(2014)9, CM/ResChS(2014)10 and CM/ResChS(2014)11, following the decisions on the merits adopted on 07/12/2012 by the European Committee on Social Rights in the following cases :
- Federation of Employed Pensioners of Greece (IKA–ETAM) v. Greece, Complaint No. 76/2012
- Panhellenic Federation of Public Service Pensioners (POPS) v. Greece, Complaint No. 77/2012 - Pensioners’ Union of the Athens-Piraeus Electric Railways (I.S.A.P.) v. Greece, Complaint No. 78/2012,
- Panhellenic Federation of Pensioners of the Public Electricity Corporation (POS-DEI) v. Greece, Complaint No. 79/2012
- Pensioner’s Union of the Agricultural Bank of Greece (ATE) v. Greece, Complaint No. 80/2012 (more information)

Five complaints have been registered against Italy, Finland and Belgium

- Associazione sindacale "La Voce dei Giusti" v. Italy, Complaint No. 105/2014
- Finnish Society of Social Rights v. Finland, Complaint No. 106/2014
- Finnish Society of Social Rights v. Finland, Complaint No. 107/2014
- Finnish Society of Social Rights v. Finland, Complaint No. 108/2014
- Mental Disability Advocacy Center (MDAC) v. Belgium, Complaint No. 109/2014

The Associazione sindacale "La Voce dei Giusti"  lodged a complaint against Italy which was registered on 22 April 2014 and relates to Articles 10 and E of the European Social Charter. It concerns the right to vocational training for teaching staff in a certain category. Complaint No. 105/2014 (Italian only)

The Finnish Society of Social Rights lodged three complaints against Finland which were registered on 29 April 2014 and relate to Articles 12 and 24 of the European Social Charter.
- Complaint No. 106/2014 concerns unlawful dismissals (sanctions and relevant remedies)
Complaint No. 106/2014
-
Complaint No. 107/2014 concerns collective dismissals based on financial or productions–related grounds Complaint No. 107/2014
- Complaint No. 108/2014 concerns the situation of the long-term unemployed  Complaint No. 108/2014

The Mental Disability Advocacy Center (MDAC) lodged a complaint against Belgium which was registered on 30 April 2014 and relates to Articles 15 and 17 of the European Social Charter.  It concerns the right to an inclusive education for children with disabilities. Complaint No. 109/2014


 Collective complaints website

Recent events


Meeting on non accepted provisions of the European Social Charter by Serbia in Belgrade

[7/11/2014] A meeting on the non accepted provisions of the European Social Charter by Serbia was held in Belgrade on 4 November 2014.  The meeting was opened by Mr Nenan Ivanisevic, Secretary of State, Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veterans and Social Affairs. Two members of the European Committee of Social Rights, Mr. Lauri Leppi et Mr. Marcin Wujczyk participated in this meeting, as well as Mr. Régis Brillat, Head of the Department of the European Social Charter, Executive Secretary of the European Committee of Social Rights and Mrs Sheila Hirschinger of the Department of the European Social Charter.  An exchange of views also took place on the Collective Complaints procedure and the European Code of Social Security.

International Conference in Roma on “Making the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union a living instrument”

[23/10/2014] The Italian Institute for International Legal Studies (ISGI – CNR) organises an international Conference on “Making the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union a living instrument”. This event will take place in Rome on 23-24 October at the National Research Council (CNR). It will bring together researchers involved in the EU related project, leading academics and experts in the field of EU law and protection of human rights. A special focus issue will be dedicated to the application of the EU Charter’s provisions concerning social rights. It is foreseen that the President, General Rapporteur and two Members of the European Committee of Social Rights will take the floor during the Conference.
Programme


International Meeting in Geneva on the protection of economic, social and cultural rights

[13/10/2014] On 8-9 October 2014 in Geneva, the President of the European Committee of Social Rights, Mr Luis Jimena Quesada, took part in the International Workshop on Enhancing Cooperation between United Nations and Regional Mechanisms for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights. He was accompanied by Mr Henrik Kristensen, Deputy Executive Secretary to the Committee. The workshop organised by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights had as its overall theme the protection of economic, social and cultural rights.

Meeting in Copenhagen on the implementation of the European Social Charter in Denmark

[22/09/2014] On 23 September 2014 a delegation of the European Committee of Social Rights will hold a series of meetings in Copenhagen, Denmark, with the Danish Government, the Parliament, the Danish Institute of Human Rights and the Danish Trade Union Confederation to discuss inter alia the prospects for ratification by Denmark of the Revised Charter and the collective complaints procedure. The delegation consists of the Committee's Vice-President, Ms Monika Schlachter, the General Rapporteur, Mr Colm O'Cinneide, and Ms Birgitta Nystrøm. The delegation will be accompanied by Mr Henrik Kristensen, Deputy Executive Secretary to the Committee.  
Programme


 Road show “We are all citizens” Programme

[06/10/2014] On 22 September 2014, Petros Stangos, Vice-President of the European Committee of Social Rights, represented the Committee on a Panel entitled “Fundamental Social Rights: Greece and Europe”, in Thessaloniki, Greece. Programme Picture
     

Meeting on non accepted provisions of the European Social Charter by Azerbaijan in Baku

[25/06/2014] A meeting on the non accepted provisions of the European Social Charter by Azerbaijan was held in Baku today.  Two members of the European Committee of Social Rights, Mr. Lauri Leppi et M. Ruchan Isik participated in this meeting, as well as Mr. Ramon Prieto-Suarez, legal officer in the Department of the European Social Charter. Programme

Round table on the promotion of the European Social Charter in Belarus

[18/06/2014] A round table on the promotion of the European Social Charter was held in Belarus on 19/06/2014. Mr Régis Brillat, Head of the Department of the European Social Charter and Mrs Danuta Wisniewska-Cazals participated in this event. Programme

Symposium on collective complaints in Paris

[18/06/2014] A symposium on the European Social Charter and collective complaints, organised in cooperation with the Fédération Internationale des Associations de Personnes Âgées (FIAPA), was held in Paris on 18 June 2014. Prof. Luis Jimena Quesada, President of the European Committee of Social Rights, participated in this symposium.    Programme  Press Release

Meeting in Moscow to allow for an exchange of views on conclusions with respect to the Russian Federation

[27/05/2014] A meeting was held in Moscow on 27 May 2014 allowing for an exchange of views covering specific provisions where the European Committee of Social Rights has found the Russian Federation not to be in compliance with the rights enshrined in the Charter as well as cases in which the Committee was unable to reach a decision due to insufficient information. Three members of the European Committe of Social Rights, Mr Petros Stangos, Vice President, Ms Elena Machulskaya and Ms Eliane Chemla, participated in this meeting, as well as Mr. Régis Brillat, Head of the Department of the European Social Charter and Mr. Ramon Prieto Suarez, legal officer. Programme


Activities of the European Social Charter

See also

Complaints by year

 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011| 2010

  Collective complaints website

The Charter in the field

2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007


Calendar of Events for the 50th anniversary Interviews and Multimedia documents 2011

Theme factsheets

Roma rights
Migrant's rights
Children's rights
Rights of people with disabilities
Right to education
Right to health
Equality between women and men

  European Code of Social Security

Link to the website of the European Code of Social Security

Turin Process

TurinPoster
 

 European Union and the Social Charter

New publication by Olivier De Schutter, Catholic University of Leuven.
 

Activity report

The activity report of the European Committee of Social Rights 2013 is available here. 

 

Newsletter of the Committee

The July 2014 issue is now available.
Sign up

For
Email Marketing
you can trust

Back issues
 
 

Publications

Collective Complaints




The Revised Charter exists in 21 languages



The Social Charter at a glance
(for other languages click here)

Recent developments in the collective complaints procedure of the European Social Charter



Tell me, what is the European Social Charter?
English  Other languages



 "Social Rights, human rights in everday life", poster and sticker

 

Order now