The EESC issues between 160 and 190 opinions and information reports a year.
It also organises several annual initiatives and events with a focus on civil society and citizens’ participation such as the Civil Society Prize, the Civil Society Days, the Your Europe, Your Say youth plenary and the ECI Day.
The EESC brings together representatives from all areas of organised civil society, who give their independent advice on EU policies and legislation. The EESC's326 Members are organised into three groups: Employers, Workers and Various Interests.
The EESC has six sections, specialising in concrete topics of relevance to the citizens of the European Union, ranging from social to economic affairs, energy, environment, external relations or the internal market.
welcomes the Action Plan on the European Pillar of Social Rights and its implementation at EU and national level, with due regard for respective competences, and considers it very timely, especially as the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted every aspect of human life, worsening pre-existing social issues, and put tremendous pressure on state institutions, communities, organisations and businesses alike;
welcomes the political consensus built around the Plan during the Social Summit in Porto with the Porto Commitment;
acknowledges the diversity and the common basis of social models across the EU;
believes that guaranteeing minimum social standards for every person living in the EU is of the utmost importance for building a fair and inclusive society;
states that competitiveness and higher productivity based on skills and knowledge are a sound recipe for maintaining the well-being of European societies;
considers that specific objectives and targets should be set for all of the 20 principles of the Pillar;
proposes that in order to make the planned mid-term review more effective, intermediate objectives and targets for this Plan for 2025 may be defined by the Member states in a constructive dialogue with social partners, so that progress in the first half of its implementation can be assessed;
suggests that as European coordination mechanism for the application of the Plan the framework of the European semester should be used;
considers that the European Semester is the appropriate framework for the monitoring of the Plan;
believes that greater efforts can be made at EU and Member State level in the area of combating poverty, in line with the first Sustainable Development Goal under the UN 2030 Agenda;
proposes that the Plan should include measures leading to address income inequality, given the well-defined priority of social cohesion, as an essential part of the European social model;
considers that the Plan should promote not only the creation of new jobs – a justified objective – but also the quality of employment, including combating precarious work;
welcomes the intention to reduce the disparities between men and women in employment and pay in a decade and the intention to increase – although this increase has not yet been quantified – the provision of early childhood education and care.