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.
The EESC welcomes the Youth Employment Package proposal and recommends that special attention be given to its application at Member State level, by making measures to combat youth unemployment an important part of the National Reform Programmes.
The EESC supports the idea of the establishment of youth guarantee schemes in the Member States being funded through a specific Youth Employment Initiative, financed within the Multiannual Financial Framework, and equipped with at least EUR 6 billion of which half will be taken from the European Social Fund. The EESC welcomes the creation of the fund, but stresses that other regions should be able to access financial support under the standard ESF procedures.
The EESC recommends that, whenever possible, the age limit for access to the scheme be increased to 30, to cover young people who leave university later or those who are still in a transition phase from education to employment and are still at risk of losing contact with the labour market.
Based on the successful examples from some Member States, the social partners and youth organisations and their representative platforms should be involved in designing, implementing, promoting and monitoring the scheme.
Reforms of the EURES services, and, where necessary, of the Public Employment Services in the Member States should also actively support young people and adapt their services and approaches in order to make them more accessible.
The conditions for offering traineeships should be improved and their quality must be ensured through specific criteria that should be made mandatory.