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04/02/2016 | IT'S TIME TO SPEAK OUT


The FFPE invites the Commission to act faster and harder to prevent psychosocial risks

As if the pressure resulting from new working time arrangements and an increased workload were not enough, at the same time posts are being eliminated, colleagues are not being replaced when they leave, particularly on retirement, career perspectives are shrinking, checks and suspicion are growing, administrative reforms are totally opaque and too often a fait accompli, and too many colleagues are being side-lined…

Taken all together, that creates the ideal conditions for burn-out and harassment.

The FFPE wishes to denounce the increasingly intimidating nature of staff management within the Commission, both for frontline staff and middle management.

The attached RTBF article flagging up the never-ending increase in the number of cases of depression and burn-out in Belgium due to the current working environment is relevant for staff in our institutions.

But the internal policies for all Commission staff, whatever their grade or category, aggravate the phenomenon, especially when they are implemented in a rigid and indiscriminate manner. Insensitivity to the resulting suffering can lead to extreme situations, such as the one at the Breydel at the end of last year.

Such unsustainable situations can break us down bit by bit. It is time to put an end to the vicious circle, before it leads to more and more dramatic situations.

Health, respect and dignity must be the central concerns of our institution's staff management policy.

The FFPE is convinced that the situation, which is already difficult and frustrating for many colleagues, is going to get worse if the new mobility policy for middle management is implemented as proposed.

It is therefore a priority to put in place effective measures to detect and prevent psycho-social risks. The FFPE is conscious that the Commission is already on the right track, with its "Practical guide for all managers".

The Commission should intensify and accelerate its efforts in this area without delay and also increase cooperation between the relevant departments.

In parallel, the FFPE proposes the re-establishment of the Joint Mobility Committee, to treat all disputed cases, and the creation of a job market.

Last but not least, the FFPE insists on the urgent launching of a true social dialogue, to replace the current diktats of the administration, with a view to redefining the talent management policy so as truly and efficiently to put:

"the right person in the right place at the right time"

FFPE team

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