PRESS RELEASE BY THE MINISTRY FOR SOCIAL DIALOGUE, CONSUMER AFFAIRS AND CIVIL LIBERTIES: “We will be using this Presidency to show that we have a social soul and to implement policies that touch upon people directly” – Minister Helena Dalli

Directors General for Industrial Relations from the twenty eight Member States are currently attending a technical meeting hosted by Malta as the incoming EU Council Presidency 2017.

Addressing guests during a formal dinner at Fort St Angelo, Minister for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties Helena Dalli stressed the need for citizens to feel connected to politicians and governments both on an EU level and on a national level. Minister Dalli remarked how recent experiences show that people feel disconnected and alienated from politicians.

“We want to push the agenda which touches upon people’s lives” stated Minister Dalli.

Minister Dalli said that throughout the six months of the Presidency, there is a strong agenda including protection of workers, labour mobility, equal treatment, equal opportunities and occupational health and safety issues.

Turning to a national level, Minister Dalli spoke about different structures set up by the government throughout the past three and a half years that have reaped results in areas of employment. These include free childcare facilities for all working parents and for those who are studying as well as the setting up of a maternity leave fund in order to eliminate discrimination against women at the point of job entry.

Minister Dalli said that through these structures, Malta experienced an increase of 6% in the participation of women in the labour market.

Minister Dalli mentioned that millions of Euros were forked out by the government to combat precarious employment by pegging the salary of workers employed by contractors who were giving a service to the government. This has brought about equal pay for both categories of workers.

Helena Dalli referred also to Malta’s labour law which is currently being overhauled in order to reflect today’s realities so that it would be more centred towards women and parents. She explained how the government needs to implement more measures whereby parents and families can balance both their work and family responsibilities.

Source: Government of Malta