Dear Colleagues

Social dialogue and traditional labour law are increasingly subject to radical pressure at both national and EU level. We, as academic lawyers, are deeply concerned about these developments and believe it to be important to voice our reactions.

Very recently, at its 316st session (1-16 /11/2012), the ILO Committee of Freedom of Association examined complaints submitted by the Greek General Confederation of Labour, the Civil Servants' Confederation, the General Federation of Employees of the National Electric Power Corporation, the Greek Federation of Private Employees, and supported by the International Trade Union Confederation, concerning austerity measures taken in Greece over the last two years within the framework of the international loan mechanism agreed upon with the Troika (EC, ECB and IMF).The Committee found that violations of ILO Conventions 87 and 98, in particular, were entailed by the request for suspension of and derogation to the collective agreements as well as derogation in pejus and decentralisation of collective bargaining.

In two recent cases, the European Committee of Social Rights of the Council of Europe, examining complaints on austerity measures taken in Greece over the last two years within the framework of the international loan mechanism agreed upon with the Troika, concluded upon the violation of a range of fundamental social rights of the Revised European Social Charter: Art. 4 Right to fair remuneration (Complaint 65/2012), Art. 7 Right of young persons to protection, Art. 10 Right to vocational training and of Art. 12 ESC Right to social security (Complaint 66/2012).

These international and European signals of disapproval to the European Union are of the utmost importance. Mobilisation in Europe should accompany such strong signals and, in particular, grave concern should be expressed about the austerity measures taken and their consequences in respect of recent – and inter-related – legal, economic, and political developments in the EU.

Attached, you will find a MANIFESTO that has been drafted with the intention of raising awareness on the violation of fundamental social rights in Europe through anti-crisis measures and calling upon the European Union TO RESPECT AND PROMOTE FUNDAMENTAL SOCIAL RIGHTS IN PARTICULAR IN RESPECT OF ALL CRISIS-RELATED MEASURES.

We would very much welcome your support and agreement (in the form of a positive reply to this email: , if possible until 22 January 2013) to the main ideas put forward in the MANIFESTO. Furthermore, do not hesitate to forward this MANIFESTO to colleagues from the legal academic community so that they too have the opportunity to participate in this action (by sending us a positive reply to

Our intention is to post the MANIFESTO on the ETUI website by the end of January 2013, together with a list of all signatories.

So far 150 colleagues from the legal academic community have signed the MANIFESTO. Furthermore, the MANIFESTO is currently be translated in the official languages of the EU.

Many thanks in advance for your commitment

Best regards
Niklas Bruun, Klaus Lörcher, Simon Deakin, Filip Dorssemont, Antoine Jacobs, Csilla Kollonay-Lehoczky, Mélanie Schmitt, Isabelle Schömann