Copy of `Fedee - Glossary of EU treaties and regulations`

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Fedee - Glossary of EU treaties and regulations
Category: General > Glossary of EU treaties and regulations
Date & country: 12/11/2010, US
Words: 134


Accession Countries
Those states currently negotiating EU membership, or awaiting final entry to the EU.

Acquired Rights
See Transfer of Undertakings

Action Programme
A strategy used by the European Commission to change attitudes rather than exert legal controls. Alternative definition: A programme embracing a wide set of policy measures.

Advocate General
Senior officer of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) who provides advice to the judiciary. His views are published.

Agency Workers
Temporary workers employed through an independent agency and subject to Directive 2008/104/EC.

Amsterdam Treaty
A major revision of the EU Treaty which was signed in October 1997. This became effective on April 1st 1999 (see Nice Treaty).

Article 137 (ex Article 118)
The so-called 'Social Chapter' in the Rome (EU) Treaty. This represents a quid pro quo for the economic dimension of the single European market.

Article 141 (ex Article 119)
That section in the Rome (EU) Treaty which outlines the rights of the European Union to deal with equal pay (and equal treatment) issues.

Article 142 (ex Article 119a)
The Treaty obligation to harmonise paid holiday arrangements between EU member states.

Article 39 (ex Article 48)
The section in the Rome Treaty that deals with the freedom of movement of workers. It outlaws discrimination based on nationality.

Article 94 (ex Article 100)
The basis for harmonisation within the Rome (EU) Treaty. Principally concerned with the approximation of national laws.

Associate Members
Those states (or sub-states) that enjoy free trade rights within the European Union, but need not comply with certain aspects of the union's legal framework

Atypical Worker
Someone who does not operate in a full-time or permanent employment capacity, ie: a part-time, fixed-term or temporary employee.

Biological Agents
The subject of a workplace health and safety Directive. This covers a wide range of possibly infectious diseases which may be transmitted in the workplace.

Brussels
The capital of Belgium and the location of the principal offices for the European Commission. It is also becoming the principal meeting place for European parliamentary committees.

Burden of Proof
The principle in equal opportunity cases that the natural advantage in proving a case lies with an employer. It therefore reverses the onus and leaves an employer the task of proving their innocence once the plaintiff has established the facts.

Business Europe
An umbrella organisation for national industry and employer associations at a European level. The organisation was formerly called UNICE.

Cabinet
A group of aides in the private office of a European Commissioner.

CEDEFOP
An EU sponsored agency which is principally concerned with research into the mutual recognition of qualifications. Formerly based in Berlin, now in Greece.

Chemical Agents
The subject of a health and safety Directive.

Child Care
A Council Recommendation (1992) aimed at increasing provision to benefit working parents.

Citizens' Europe
A popular official expression in the 1970s to indicate the importance of free movement and the creation of a shared identity across the Community of member states. It is perhaps best symbolized by the existence of a common passport.

Co-operation Procedure
Established by the Treaty. This provides a mechanism for achieving agreement in the Council of Ministers by a qualified majority voting procedure and the more streamlined passage of measures through the other institutions. Now largely replaced by co-decision procedure.

Codetermination
A requirement regulating the operation of works councils in several continental countries. It defines a number of areas where the agreement of employee representatives is necessary before management may take action. eg: the monitoring of employee performance.

Cohesion
The task of removing economic and social imbalances within the European Union. Not all countries enjoy the same standard of living and that is one of the main reasons for providing regional aid.

Collective Redundancy
The dismissal of several employees from a single establishment or undertaking. It is covered by the Collective Redundancy Directive (now revised).

Common Market
Original name for the European Union. Technically called the EEC, then the EC and finally the EU.

Community Language
Any of the languages officially recognized by the EU institutions.

Constitution
See EU Constitution.

Construction Sites
Temporary and/or mobile operations. Subject to a sector health and safety Directive (1992).

COREPER
Permanent representatives of member states (civil servants) who carry out many of the detailed tasks associated with achieving agreement on a proposed EU measure.

Council of Europe
Established in 1949 as an intergovernmental forum for international policy co-ordination between all European democracies. One of its most important landmarks was the European Convention on Human Rights (1950).

Council of Ministers
The supreme legislative arm of the European Union. Specialist councils are composed of national ministers from all member states. Social and employment matters are dealt with by the EU Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council. This usually meets on a formal basis 2-3 times a year.

Data Protection
The EU General Data Protection Directive (1995), which establishes common European standards for the handling of personnel records. Effective date 24th October 1998.

Delors, Jacques
Former President of the European Commission. He was the architect of the single market programme and responsible for the greater emphasis placed upon the European social dimension.

Derogation
A special 'licence' to remain outside the strict application of a Directive or Regulation provided that certain criteria have been met (i.e. the matter is covered by a current collective agreement).

Dignity of Men and Women at Work
A Commission Recommendation (1991) aimed at reducing sexual harassment.

Direct Effect
The right of EU citizens to cite treaties, Directives and other EU measures in national courts.

Directive
A decision by the Council of Ministers that must be incorporated into national legislation by all member states within an agreed time limit (usually two or three years).

Directorate General (DG)
A division of the European Commission. DG5 covers employment, industrial relations, social affairs and equal opportunities.

Economic and Social Committee
Established in 1958 as a body consisting of representatives from national governments and both sides of industry. It has negligible powers, but does retain a right to be consulted about proposed measures in its domain.

EEA
See European Economic Area.

Effective date
The date given in an EU Directive as the deadline for incorporation into national legislation.

EFTA
The small and declining free trade area that embraces several western European countries that are outside the European Union.

Emanation of the State
All public bodies (and many quangos) can be classified in this way and must therefore apply EU Directives as soon as they reach their formal effective date

Enlargement
The programme for expanding the European Union.

Equal Pay Directive
This establishes the rights of men and women to receive equal pay for the same (or equivalent) work (1975). Effective in 1976.

Equal Treatment Directive
This sets out the rights of men and women to be treated equally with regard to access to employment, vocational training, promotion and working conditions (1976). Effective in 1978. Directive fully revised as a framework measure (2002).

ETUC
An umbrella organisation for national trade union confederations at a European level.

EU
The European Union.

EU Constitution
Originally drawn up by a special convention in 2003 and not yet adopted. It is intended to form the ongoing basis for further EC treaties.

Euro
Common currency for the EU states that have so far accepted full European Monetary Union.

Eurolink Age
A network of organisations and individuals concerned with older people and ageing issues.

European Collective Agreement
An outcome of The Maastricht Treaty. This seeks to introduce change through collective bargaining rather than by statutory measures alone.

European Commission
The 'civil service' of the European Union. The Commission also has some executive powers in its own right.

European Commissioner
A principal officer of the European Commission. They collectively form an administration under the President. Each has a specialist portfolio.

European Community (EC)
Former name for the European Union (see EU), but retained for use in some contexts.

European Company Statute
A measure allowing the establishment of a European company. A protocol to the Directive guarantees employee participation rights.

European Court of Justice (ECJ)
The supreme court of the European Union that oversees the application of the EU treaties and measures agreed by the Council of Ministers.

European Economic Area
An agreement linking the EU with several former EFTA States (Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein). It became fully effective in 1994. The non-EU members adopt most EU laws and take part in action programmes, but are not part of the decision making machinery.

European Globalisation Fund
Budget line for assisting workers find new employment when they become redundant. Administered through EU member states.

European Monetary Union
The programme for introducing a common EU currency (the euro).

European Parliament
Originally called an 'assembly'. This is the key democratic decision making body for the European Union.

European Social Fund
The main focus for EU funding directed towards the alleviation of unemployment and poverty. It also aims to create jobs, but has had little real impact in this field.

European Union (EU)
The organisation of states that brings together the twenty seven states that form the principal economic and political bloc in Europe. The current members are

European Works Council
A body established to receive information and be consulted about transnational issues affecting workers in multinational companies. Subject to a Directive that became fully effective on September 22nd 1996. It has been subject to several subsequent modifications and extensions.

European Year
Each year, the European Union designates a focus area for policy and associated propaganda.

Eurozone
An area comprising all the countries that recognise the euro as their national currency.

Exemption
Fields of application where a Treaty, Regulation or Directive does not apply.

Extractive Industries
Onshore or offshore mineral operations. Subject to a sector health and safety Directive (1992).

Factortame
Spanish fishing case involving the UK government. This established the vulnerability of national governments to compensation when they wrongly implement EU legal measures (see Frankovitch).

Fifth Directive
Measure proposed in October 1972. All public companies would have been required to elect worker representatives onto their (supervisory or main) boards. Not finally adopted.

Flexicurity
Policies that seek to maximise labour flexibility and job security.

Frankovitch
Italian case that demonstrated the vulnerability of national governments to claims for damages when they fail to implement an EU legal measure within an agreed time limit (see Factortame).

Freedom of Movement of People
One of the principal 'freedoms' established in the Treaty of union.

ILO
The International Labour Organisation was established in 1919 to improve labour conditions throughout the world. It has a head office in Geneva, Switzerland and is now a constituent part of the United Nations.

Indirect Effect
The obligation of national courts to interpret all domestic laws in the light of relevant Treaty rights and obligations, Directives, and other EU measures.

Information and Consultation
The minimum level of worker involvement allowed for in EU social policy. See European Works Councils and Co-determination.

Infringement Proceedings
Action initiated by the European Commission against member states that do not comply with EU legal obligations. The ultimate arbiter is the European Court of Justice (ECJ).

Lay-off
Temporary suspension of work, normally due to a decline in demand for goods or services. In many EU countries, laid-off workers are entitled to guaranteed payments.

Leonardo
A fund set up to assist vocational training.

Lobbyist
A person or organisation seeking to change the views of legislators about proposed measures, or to achieve modifications to existing measures.

Luxembourg
Capital city of the small European state with the same name. It is the home of the European Court of Justice and a number of lower status European Commission offices.

Maastricht
Town in SE Netherlands. Amendments to the Rome Treaty that were agreed in October 1992 were named after the town where the Treaty was formally signed.

Majority Voting (Qualified)
Agreement in Council involving a majority based on the relative voting power of different member states (i.e. the larger nations enjoy the highest points qualifications during voting).

Manual Handling
A Directive aimed at reducing injury arising from physical stress at work (eg. lifting heavy weights).

Mission
A business trip by a civil servant from the European Commission.

Monnet, Jean
French politician. One of the principal founding fathers of the European movement and original EEC.

Nice Treaty
A further revision of the EU Treaty, signed in February 2001. Its revisions paved the way for further EU expansion.

Office for Official Publications
Luxembourg based publishers of official EU documents.

Official Journals
A series of regular publications (L, C and S). They contain details of proposed legislation, new legislation, official calls to tender and related information.

Opt-out
A special facility given to one or more member states that allows them to ignore a specific element within a legislative measure or part of an agreed programme.

Parental Leave
The right to unpaid leave for childcare purposes. The subject of a European collective agreement (1996) and subsequent Directive.

Personal Protective Equipment
Anything from a safety helmet to a thimble. Subject of a workplace health and safety Directive (1989).

Physical Agents
Phenomena such as noise, vibration and electro magnetic induction. The subject of several important EU health and safety Directives.

Pillars
The key policy areas upon which European integration is based. The first pillar is 'economic union', the second a 'common foreign and security policy' and the third 'justice and home affairs'.

Plenary Session
The general meetings of MEPs in the European Parliament. They are generally held about once a month and last for 3-4 days.

Political Agreement
The stage reached during a Council of Ministers' debate where the parties have reached a broad consensus of views. Not yet a final agreement.

Positive Action
Also called 'affirmative action'. The principle used in equal opportunities policies. According to its philosophical position, disadvantage is only likely to be removed if a temporary bias is accepted in favour of the disadvantaged group. A Council Recommendation on positive action for women was adopted in December 1984.

Posting of Workers
See 'subcontracting'.