Communication from the European Commission on by accinent

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									        Communication from the European Commission on
  Mobility, an instrument for more and better jobs: the European
                Job Mobility Action Plan (2007-2010)
                                       COM (2007) 773 final
                                                                                      Ref: AD/2008/P5737
                                                                             Brussels, 11 March 2008


                                 POSITION PEARLE*

I. Introduction

1. On 10 December 2007 the European Commission presented a new action plan to promote
mobility across Europe, including concrete actions which involve all levels of public
authorities.

2. Pearle*, the European federation representing the interests of about 4,000 performing arts
organisations, very much welcomes the initiative from the Commission to put forward an
action plan that aims at tackling obstacles that people face when seeking work in another EU
country, in particular to improve legislation, to remove administrative barriers and to ensure
policy support at all levels.

3. For a sector as the live performance, which Pearle* represents, mobility is an inherent
feature of the sector. Cultural workers are mobile both in job and geographical terms. In this
sector, the turnover of jobs can sometimes be extremely short (days or weeks). This results
in particular difficult situations regarding the acquisition and the entitlements to social
security benefits. The major obstacles to mobility in the live performance sector have been
described in a study conducted on behalf of Pearle* and published in January 2007 as part of
a project support through “the European Year on Mobility for Workers 2006”. In this study
also possible solutions to improve mobility were presented.


II. General remarks

4. The Communication describes the general policy context referring to the greater demand
for mobility because of the globalisation of economy, the ageing population and the rapid
evolving labour markets. The objectives of the Lisbon strategy and recently the principles
presented by the Commission on flexicurity, set out workers mobility as a key instrument
towards an efficiently functioning single market.

5. Pearle* fully agrees that workers mobility is based on the important principle of free
movement of people in the internal market. Both facilities for managing employment,
promoting mobility and supporting employment transitions are to be set against the
background of a Europe with no internal borders.



                                                                                                      1
               Pearle* (Performing Arts Employers Associations League Europe) aisbl
                            Square Sainctelette 19/6 – B-1000 Brussels
        Phone +32-2-203.62.96 / Fax 32-2-201.17.27 / e-mail info@pearle.ws / www.pearle.ws
6. Pearle* strongly believes that Europe should deal with the concept of „mobility of workers‟
in all aspects of Community policy. This is essential for optimising the forecasted results of
the Mobility Action Plan. Internal market, taxation, justice and home affairs, entreprise need
to be involved in this process. Whilst reference to education as an important area is
mentioned, to our view also the policy field of culture should be involved, as the mobility in
the cultural sector is one of the current priority areas in developing a cultural agenda for
Europe.

7. In general, Pearle* welcomes and supports the aims set out in the Action Plan. But more
particularly, Pearle* believes that it is essential that existing legislation and administrative
practices regarding workers mobility are improved and that policy support for mobility from
authorities at all levels is ensured.


III. Comments to the action plan

Improving existing legislation and administrative practices
8. With regard to the first domain, the regulation on the coordination of social security
schemes is essential to the sector of the live performance. As described above, workers in the
sector have very variable career patterns, and they may sometimes change between the
status of employed and self-employed in the course of their career. A major problem related
to social security are the acquisition conditions attached to social security rights. The
dynamics of the sector are as such that people sometimes work only for a few days with one
employer. It is learned that the current systems of social security are ill-adapted to such
labour market.

9. It is of the utmost importance to adapt the social security system to such situations, as it
often concerns young people at the beginning of their careers who find themselves in a
vulnerable position as they are confronted with situations whereby they may not have
acquired a treshold to apply for certain social security rights (for example unemployment).

10. Pearle* welcomes that the TRESS-network will further investigate different mobility
patterns with a view to possibly adapting Community legislation. The application of the social
security regulations the different Member States is extremely important for the functioning of
the labour markets of different sectors.

11. Pearle* also welcomes the fact that the TRESS-network will enhance the knowledge of
Community regulations which is as much needed for employers and self-employed persons as
it is for workers (trade-unions), civil servants, lawyers. Pearle* therefore urges the
Commission to also include the employers in its group of stakeholders, and in particular the
sectoral representatives, as it is often the employers who support workers with particular
questions related to social security regulations.

12. The proposal to improve the exchange of information between national institutions and
the electronic version of the European health insurance card is welcomed by the members of
Pearle*. A further inclusion of information on such electronic card would be a next step to be
taken as soon as possible. To have all the information available on an individual‟s social
security rights on the basis of the person‟s career would mean a great step forward.
Therefore a single EU national social security number would both in administrative terms for
public authorities and for the individual improve the mobility of workers.

13. Pearle* therefore asks the Commission to undertake a study to consider the broader
application of the health insurance card into an EU social security card based on a EU wide ID
number for social security, encompassing all the different elements of the social security.


                                                                                              2
                Pearle* (Performing Arts Employers Associations League Europe) aisbl
                             Square Sainctelette 19/6 – B-1000 Brussels
         Phone +32-2-203.62.96 / Fax 32-2-201.17.27 / e-mail info@pearle.ws / www.pearle.ws
Ensuring policy support for mobility from authorities at all levels
14. With regard to the second domain “ensuring policy support for mobility from authorities
at all levels” it should be noted that mobility is inherent to a person‟s career development.
Only by the cross-fertilisation between different cultures the cultural worker can fully enjoy
the benefits of the sector he/she is working in.

15. Pearle* supports and encourages the European Commission to ensure fair mobility. A way
to ensure fair mobility is to involve sectoral organisations by creating a certificate of „fair‟
employer. By introducing such system the employer acts as a gatekeeper.

16. The proposal to stimulate cross-border cooperation for job opportunities should go
together with improving obstacles related to the complexities of applying social security
systems of two neighbouring countries. This is particularly the case for smaller countries,
where cultural workers often work for a short-term (one performance or a live performance
production). It is essential that all levels cooperate to improve and facilitate the cross-border
mobility aiming at reducing barriers and rewarding employers who take part in encouraging
workers mobility.

Reinforcing EURES
17. For the sector of the live performance, the EURES network is appreciated for the
information it can supply and the links it makes to other European services and portals.
However, the service is rarely used in the sector to bring together job applicant and
employer, as the sector has its own portal, networks and gateways to inform about
vacancies.

18. Given the fact that the cultural sector is one of the fastest growing sectors in Europe, it
would be helpful should EURES advisers at local level would have general knowledge about
the sector, its functioning and sources of information. The EURES network could however
play an important role, when it comes to supporting individual artists with regarding to their
career transition, which is particularly the case for dancers who have a short career.

Fostering awareness of the advantages of mobility
19. The sector is proud to say that cultural workers are at a high level of awareness of the
benefits of mobility. In particular for the group of artists, but also in the management levels
and technical professions in the sector, being able to exchange and learn from each other is
essential for the personal development. Given the international context in which the
performing arts operate, language is rarely a problem for the artistic professionals, in
particular when it concerns touring or short-term contracts. Knowledge of the local language
is indeed more crucial for people intending to move for a longer period to another country, in
particular for those who intend to work on the managerial side of the performing arts.

20. As is already the case for students, through the Erasmus-, Leonardo- and other
programmes, it would be welcomed to develop schemes to support young professionals to be
mobile. Whilst most of these schemes are based on the voluntary decision of an individual,
schemes to support mobility of young professionals could be focused on a mutual relationship
between worker and employer whereby it could be considered to encourage a person to gain
experience outside his/her residence country, thereby raising one‟s understanding of other
cultures and improving one‟s capacity of dialoguing with other cultures and in other
languages.




                                                                                               3
                Pearle* (Performing Arts Employers Associations League Europe) aisbl
                             Square Sainctelette 19/6 – B-1000 Brussels
         Phone +32-2-203.62.96 / Fax 32-2-201.17.27 / e-mail info@pearle.ws / www.pearle.ws
IV. Conclusion

21. Pearle* welcomes the Commission‟s proposals for an action plan on mobility and on its
intention to encourage labour market mobility as a tool for responding to the labour market
developments in the framework of globalisation and as a part of the Lisbon objectives.

22. Given the fact that this proposal is referring to the Lisbon objectives, at which all policy
fields are related to, Pearle* urges the Commission to consider mobility as a policy aim to be
dealt with in a transversal way thereby involving all EU policy fields and authorities at all
levels.

23. Pearle* urges the Commission to reduce legislative and administrative obstacles to
mobility and underlines the need for improving the acquisition of social security rights and
benefits for people with short-term contracts and calls upon the Commission to study the
possibility to develop an EU electronic social security card based on an EU wide ID social
security number related to one person, that covers all aspects of social security, including
health insurance.

24. Enhanced knowledge with EURES advisers focusing on particular mobile sectors as the
live sector, would fill in the gap for assistance and guidance for people working in the sector.




                                                                                              4
                Pearle* (Performing Arts Employers Associations League Europe) aisbl
                             Square Sainctelette 19/6 – B-1000 Brussels
         Phone +32-2-203.62.96 / Fax 32-2-201.17.27 / e-mail info@pearle.ws / www.pearle.ws

								
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