Council of Europe

Download the Information Paper on the European Social Charter and its Supervision

The IOE is actively involved in the work of the Council of Europe, with a particular focus on implementation of the 1961 and revised European Social Charter.

This means that the IOE sits with representatives of governments and workers on the Governmental Committee of the European Social Charter which meets twice a year and examines how State parties to the ESC are implementing its provisions. Each meeting examines the application of a pre-determined number of provisions in all the countries where conclusions of non-compliance have been reached.  Several of these provisions directly affect employers where they relate to working conditions, the right to organise and the right to collective bargaining etc.  Before each meeting, the IOE sends the provisional agenda, identifying the provisions to be examined, to all relevant IOE members.

The IOE also closely follows collective complaints which are examined by the European Committee of Social Rights  that may have direct implications for employers and companies.

The IOE's consultative status within the CoE allows it to play an important role in communicating the business perspective within the Charter’s supervisory procedure, both before the Governmental Committee and in the case of collective complaints.

To date, the IOE has submitted observations on four collective complaint procedures:

Case No. 59/2008 on the right to strike involving picketing in Belgium

Case No. 85/2012 on starting industrial action in Sweden

Cases No. 106-107-108/2014 on social security coverage in Finland

Case No. 111/2014 on working conditions and wages in Greece