The Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung is convinced that social justice is a cornerstone of social democracy. Trade unions are key actors in promoting democracy and social justice. Cooperation with trade unions is therefore a cross-cutting task in all areas for both the EU Office of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Brussels and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung as a whole.
The EU Office plays a role in promoting trade union activities, social dialogue and social partnership in labour relations in the EU and worldwide. It also supports trade unions in joint projects and is involved in mutual consultation and exchange.
Apart from the cross-cutting nature of trade union cooperation, the individual topics range from strengthening the social dimension of European integration and the issues of anti-discrimination, working time, temporary work or European Works Councils to the social face of globalisation including European trade and economic policy, via development policy, equality and migration.
Within the EU Office’s areas of discussion and work, Brussels-based representatives of national, European and international trade union organisations consult on the political process with EU decision-makers and other experts.
Furthermore, the EU Office facilitates exchanges between numerous trade unions from Europe and the rest of the world and Brussels-based trade union representatives, for example. Topics include capacity-building when establishing trade unions in the EU Member States and third countries throughout the world, and the consolidation of trade union-related knowledge with regard to the EU.
The EU Office also acts as a conduit through which the 100 or so country specific and regional trade union projects of the FES in its global network can contact the Brussels-based representations of European and international trade union organisations.