On 18 May 2021, EFEE attended the Liaison Forum of the European Commission Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion (DG EMPL), which took place online. The Liaison Forum brings together EU sectoral social partners for exchanging good practices across sectors and following developments in EU policy making with regards to employment and social affairs.

On this occasion, the Liaison Forum was entirely dedicated to Climate and Just Transitions. Ms. Isobel Findlay and Ms. Katarzyna Bałucka-Dębska from DG CLIMA introduced participants to the “Fit for 55” Package as well as the European Climate Pact. The former will be published before the summer break and aims to set ambitious yet realistic actions to achieve the new 2030 target of at least 55% net greenhouse gas emissions reduction compared to 1990 levels. The latter highlights education and academia (scientific research and innovation organisations/networks) as one of the key elements in reaching the objectives set out in the European Climate Pact. In this regard, the Commission aims to ramp up the support to the multitude of initiatives already going on as well as establish a Knowledge Hub, which will help stakeholders navigate through the existing initiatives. Lastly, the Pact encourages individuals and organisations to sign a pledge expressing their support to this Pact by highlighting their existing actions. These pledges aim to add value by asking to go beyond classical CO2 reductions pledges and by adding a people-focused element to them.

Against this background, EFEE presented their joint project with SGI Europe on “Green Skills in VET” to the Liaison Forum. Furthermore, both the education social partners took this opportunity to underline the pivotal role that the education sector plays in facilitating this green transition. Having this in mind, the social partners in education stressed the need to involve them in policy initiatives at the European and national level from the outset. Following a presentation by Peter Berkowitz, Head of Smart and Sustainable Growth Unit, DG REGIO, on the Just Transition Platform, the Liaison Forum was closed with an overview of the latest developments in social policy.

The next Liaison Forum meeting will take place on 9 June.

For more details, please contact isaline.ossieur@educationemployers.eu