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.
Amidst the modest economic recovery experienced in recent years, overall employment in the EU has been growing and unemployment has been falling. However, current long-term jobless rates and youth unemployment figures remain unacceptable. Europe's first priority must be to create more numerous, quality jobs. That is particularly testing in the context of structural drivers of change such as technological innovation and globalisation, which 'pose both opportunities and challenges for the world of employment.
Member States are primarily responsible for employment policy. However, the EU works with them to pursue a coordinated strategy: the European employment strategy. The EU encourages cooperation between Member States and supports and evaluates their efforts, mainly through the European Semester, guidelines on employment and the monitoring of national policies (Joint Employment Report, National Reform Programmes and country-specific recommendations).
The European Commission is obliged to consult the EESC on employment issues. The EESC has adopted opinions on all the main initiatives at EU level (e.g. the European Pillar of Social Rights, Guidelines for employment policies, the Employment package, the Youth Guarantee).