FAFCE

Federation of Catholic Family Associations in Europe

Work-free Sunday in Europe: Which way forward?

Yesterday in Brussels FAFCE took part in the European Sunday Alliance’s 2019 networking event entitled ‘Work-free Sunday and decent working hours in Europe: Which way forward?’.

The event was specifically tailored towards the members and supporters of the European Sunday Alliance in the Member States, aiming at an exchange on promotion of decent working hours. Good practices of the Sunday alliance campaigns across Europe will be presented, as well as initiatives taken by Members of the European Parliament (MEPs).

Taking place 3 months ahead of the EU elections in May 2019, the event aimed to engage and raise awareness among key MEPs and candidates on the important issue of work-free Sundays and decent working hours.

During the meeting in the European Parliament, a special focus was devoted to the experiences and the ongoing work of the Austrian and the Croatian national Sunday Alliances. The recent new Polish legislation was also mentioned: since the 11th of March 2018 commercial activities are limited on Sunday in the Country. Polish workers and their families positively appreciate the law, raising the level of work-family life balance.

The European Sunday Alliance gathers different types of civil society organisations, trade unions and churches aiming at raising awareness of the unique value of synchronised free time for our European societies.

The President of FAFCE, Antoine Renard, declares: “FAFCE has always been a strong supporter of the European Sunday Alliance, since the very beginning. Families need work, roof and time. And time means at least one common full day of rest per week and that day in the European culture is Sunday”.

The protection of Sunday as a common day of rest for all Europeans is motivated by issues related to the effect on health and safety and work-life balance, as well as issues of a social, religious and educational nature. Family associations feel directly concerned. For that reason, the Vote for Family Manifesto, which FAFCE will publish next week in view of the upcoming European Elections, will ask to the candidates to commit themselves in favour of Sunday, as a common weekly day of rest, for stronger families and a more flourishing society.

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