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Equal opportunities and access to the labour market
1. Education, training and life-long learning Everyone has the right to quality and inclusive education, training and life-long learning in order to maintain and acquire skills that enable them to participate fully in society and manage successfully transitions in the labour market. 2. Gender equality Equality of treatment and opportunities between women and men must be ensured and fostered in all areas, including regarding participation in the labour market, terms and conditions of employment and career progression. Women and men have the right to equal pay for work of equal value.
The gender pay gap in the EU and the European Pillar of #SocialRights
1. The gender pay gap in the EU is 16.2%, that’s 16.2% higher than it should be! Gender equality is the second key principle of the European Pillar of #SocialRights for a reason 2. The European Pillar of #SocialRights supports the right to equal treatment and opportunities regarding employment, social protection, education, and access to goods and services available to the public. Something NCW Malta has supported since its creation!
Gender Equality in the Media Sector
This study was commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality. It examines key elements of the European policy agenda pertaining to gender equality in the media sector. It also reviews existing research on women's representation within media content and the media workforce. The study provides analysis of actions to promote gender equality in the media at both EU and Member State levels. Finally, it presents case studies of gender equality in the media sector in four Member States: Austria, Malta, Sweden, and the UK.
Empowering women and girls in media and ICT
On the occasion of the International Women's Day, the Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality is holding an inter-parliamentary committee meeting on empowering women and girls in media and ICT. The meeting, which will bring together EU institutional representatives, members of EU national parliaments, experts and stakeholders, will take place on 08 March 2018. The presentation and debates will deal with the topics of women shaping media, empowering women and girls through digital inclusion and women’s movements and advancing equality in the digital age.
Digital healthcare / health insurance
In the view of the EESC, given the digital revolution in the field of health, it is vital to maintain and promote a health insurance system which serves the needs of everyone, and is solidarity-based, inclusive and non-discriminatory. Inclusion and fair access for all to good quality health services (digital or otherwise) and commitment to these are in fact prerequisites for universal health coverage.
Gender equality in European labour markets
In order to improve gender equality in labour markets, the EESC considers it necessary to draw up an integrated and ambitious European strategy to tackle systemic and structural obstacles and lead to adequate policies, measures and EU funding programmes for improving equality between women and men, thus fostering "more equal economic independence of women and men" . This would also contribute to the implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights.
Services to the family
Developing services in private homes in order to achieve a better work-life balance Every family has a home and clothes to maintain, meals to prepare, children to care for, elderly parents or ill or disabled family members who need help. Women often have to work part-time in order to carry out these tasks, missing out on the career for which they have trained or on time they would use for training.
Women and girls digital gender gap
This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the FEMM Committee, attempts to reveal the links between the different factors (access, skills, socio-economic and cultural), which prevent women from having equal access to digital technology. It then suggests ways of dealing with online and offline inequalities to the effect of closing the digital gender gap and improving women’s and girls’ digital inclusion and future technology-related career paths.
Plastics, human health and environmental impacts: The road ahead
Plastics have been with us for more than a century, and by now they’re everywhere, for good and for ill. Plastic containers and coatings help keep food fresh, but they can also leave behind neurotoxins such as BPA in the human body. PVC is used for everything from pipes and flooring to furniture and clothes, but it contains compounds called phthalates that have been implicated in male reproductive disorders. Studies have also shown that childhood exposure to environmental pollutants can have significant negative effects later in life, including reduced labor force participation and even earnings.
European Commission aims to significantly reduce the gender pay gap
The European Commission plans to use a series of measures aimed at significantly reducing the pay gap between men and women over the next five years. The average gender pay gap in the EU currently stands at 18%. To lower this rate, the Commission plans to raise awareness among employers, encourage initiatives to promote gender equality and support the development of tools to measure the gender pay gap.
NCW Annual General Meeting 2019
NCW Annual General Meeting 2019 The Annual General Meeting of the National Council of Women was held on Saturday 26th January 2019, at The Victoria Hotel, Sliema. President Mary Gaerty spoke about the work which the Council has embarked on during 2018. This included pensions, education, violence against women, work and entrepreneurship, work life balance and the challenges faced by women on a daily basis. She also highlighted the fact that the National Council of Women is looking ahead at the constant changes
Work-life Balance
Better work-life balance for EU citizens: Presidency reaches provisional agreement with the European Parliament
The National Council of Women supports the Act to provide protection for human embryos
NCW has always advocated for legislation of alternative IVF treatment not least because of the sensitivity and the consequences for both parents and society if it had to remain unregulated. NCW believes that IVF treatment should be for heterosexuals within a stable family environment The Council has always supported the protection of embryos as the first cell of a human life and, with the development of alternative treatment over the past years this has become possible successfully.
Women on Boards: Vice-President Viviane Reding meets with leaders of Europe's business schools and i
Today, EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding met with European Industry Associations, European Business Schools and Senior Executive Women to discuss progress being made on improving the gender balance in company boardrooms.
UfM adopts new project to support women’s empowerment in the Mediterranean
A project aimed at developing women’s empowerment in the Mediterranean through the development of effective field projects and the setting up of networks and platforms, was adopted by Senior Officials of the Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) at a meeting held last month.
Date: 23/05/2012
 

Directive on self-employed workers and their partners - NCW calls for introduction of necessary measures

by Francesca Vella

Article published on 20 May 2012

The National Council of Women (NCW) has called for the introduction of the necessary measures to ensure the implementation of the EU directive on self-employed workers and assisting spouses who will enjoy better social protection, including the right to maternity leave for the first time.

The directive on self-employed workers and their partners (Directive 2010/41/EU) repeals and replaces an earlier law (Directive 86/613/EEC) and improves the social protection rights of millions of European women in the labour market, strengthening female entrepreneurship. At present, only about 30 per cent of women in Europe, and 18 per cent in Malta, are entrepreneurs.

Annual employment figures from the Labour Force Survey reveal a marked increase in the percentage of women in the workforce since 2003, but at just 40 per cent, Malta still ranks last in the EU in this area.

The National Council of Women, together with four other organisations (The Foundation for Women Entrepreneurs, Reach Beyond Foundation, Malta Business Bureau, and the Malta Association of Women in Business), has been working on a project aimed at promoting entrepreneurship among women since 2010.

The main objective of the Amie (Ambassadors in Malta for Increasing Women Entrepreneurs) project is to promote female entrepreneurship through the establishment of a network of women ambassadors, which is part of the European Network of Women Entrepreneurs.

The 10 Maltese ambassadors act as role models as they inspire other women to become entrepreneurs by telling their own story; their aim is to foster women’s ability to create a vision for themselves as entrepreneurs as well as the required motivation and self-confidence in setting up and creating a successful business.

The partners of the consortium intend to sustain this action once the project draws to a close at the end of November this year.

NCW vice-president Grace Attard said the NCW would like to see a bigger focus by the authorities on female entrepreneurship, as it is "the perfect road to growth".

In particular, she referred to the importance of implementing the EU directive on self-employed workers and their partners, which entered into force in August 2010. EU member states had to introduce the directive into their national laws within two years.

"What measures are being taken to ensure that the directive will be implemented?" asked Mrs Attard.

The NCW welcomed the government’s successful efforts to reach an agreement on the extension of paid maternity leave with the social partners within the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development.

By means of this agreement, which has been approved by the Employment Relationships Board, the extension of maternity leave by four weeks spread over a two-year period, will be paid by the government with a fixed amount of €160 per week. Mothers who are on maternity leave as from 2 January 2012 are entitled to these provisions.

The NCW considers this development as another important step following the publication of a legal notice regulating temping agencies, which came into force on 5 December 2011.

Employers stand to gain from this measure, as they will be able to employ trained personnel on a temporary basis when workers are on long leave (in this case mothers before and after they give birth).

The interim period necessary for a fully functioning temping agency/ies requires a number of measures to address the needs of both employers and workers.

Among other things, NCW has recommended the introduction of schemes by the Employment and Training Corporation for the provision of supply workers during maternity and paternity leave, a further increase in the number of affordable and accessible care services for children through public private partnerships and the use of structural funds, as well as the introduction of a legal provision to increase paternity leave by including a non-transferable period in paternal leave to encourage the sharing of care responsibilities between mothers and fathers.

Viviane Reding, EU Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship and vice-president of the European Commission, had said about the directive: "With the entry into force of this new law, Europe takes an important step forward in terms of increasing social protection and providing equal economic and social rights for self-employed men and women, and their partners. The new European law ensures full equality in practice between men and women in working life, promoting female entrepreneurship and allowing self-employed women to enjoy better social security protection. I call on all member states to start implementing the Directive swiftly so that our citizens can see the benefits in their daily lives."

The directive considerably improves the protection of female self-employed workers and assisting spouses or life partners of self-employed workers, particularly also in case of maternity. They are granted a maternity allowance and leave of at least 14 weeks, should they choose to take it. At EU level, this is the first time a maternity allowance has been granted to self-employed workers.

The new rules also serve to encourage entrepreneurship in general and among women in particular.

Finally, the provision on social protection for assisting spouses and life partners (recognised as such in national law) is also a considerable improvement on the 1986 Directive. They will have the right to social security coverage (such as pensions) on an equal basis as formal self-employed workers, if the member state offers such protection to self-employed workers. This will help provide a stronger social safety net and prevent women from falling into poverty.

 
 
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