Leïla Chaibi ➡️ Commission: action towards procuring decent work?

MEP backs cleaners' demands for dignity in company contracts for public institutions.

Leïla Chaibi ➡️ Commission: action towards procuring decent work?

The EU’s broken public procurement rules result in half of all public contracts to private companies being attributed based solely on the lowest price. As a result, companies that are prepared to cut corners, notably on labour costs, are rewarded. This disincentivises decent work conditions agreed through collective bargaining and instead paves the way to exploitative labour relations.

MEP Leïla Chaibi has submitted a Parliamentary Question to the EU Commission. The questions highlight the recent joint statement by employers and workers in the cleaning sector which stresses the need to move away from using lowest price for attributing public tenders.

The current rules fail cleaners, who are deprived of their ability to have a say over the conditions that shape their working lives. Without a collective say, this workforce, mostly made up of working women, has experienced increases in working hours, including during night shifts and expansions in workloads, often while salaries have stagnated.

The current rules also fail decent work employers, as highlighted in the joint statement, which reads: “By putting lowest price above all other selection criteria, public bodies risk discouraging quality service provision, harm socially responsible companies and create unsustainable levels of labour shortages.”

“It is vital that public money no longer fuels a race to the bottom in the cleaning sector. Working people need answers. Employers need answers. Leïla Chaibi has championed this cause from the start. With her help and that of fellow MEPs, we will get answers and fix the EU’s rules of public procurement once and for all,” said Oliver Roethig, Regional Secretary of UNI Europa.

The Parliamentary Question text by MEP Leïla Chaibi is the following:

The social partners UNI Europa and EFCI (the European Cleaning and Facility Services Industry) recently published a joint declaration that has a clear message for the Commission.

They call on the Commission to consider adjusting the public procurement rules as to (i) require Member States to exclude the use of the lowest price criterion in essential services and labour-intensive industries, (ii) ensure that contracts are only awarded to companies that adhere to collective agreements, (iii) include clauses on price-revision due to collective agreements and (iv) enable the promotion of collective bargaining through public procurement.

Considering the above, and the fact that the Minimum Wages Directive aims to enhance collective bargaining coverage to 80 % in Member States:

     1. How will the Commission respond to this call from the social partners?

     2. Will the Commission table a change in the rules to enable the promotion of collective bargaining through public procurement?

    3. How will the Commission reconsider its current rules and strategy on social public procurement in order to put an end to the publicly financed race to the bottom in terms of working conditions that we are currently observing?

Meetings & Events







UNI Europa workshop and conference on Collective Bargaining and the Minimum Wage Directive

UNI Europa hosts a conference on the upcoming National Action Plans regarding collective bargaining within the framework of the EU Minimum Wage Directive.



1st Workshop – Project: Monitoring and furthering the autonomous implementation of the European framework agreement on occupational health and safety in the hairdressing sector



Commerce/Tourism EWC Network Meeting


timing: 9:30 to 12:00