Keywords: European social dialogue; Collective bargaining; Horizontal subsidarity; Information and consultation in central governmental administrations.
The EPSU judgment of the General Court of 24 October 2019 constitutes
a major setback in the history of the European Social Dialogue.
It demonstrates that two major EU institutions (the Commission and the
Court of Justice) have failed to recognize and promote the role of the
social partners at its level, as is being prescribed in Article 152 TFEU. The approach of the General Court is criticized for its choice to give priority
to provisions empowering institutions instead of European citizens.
It fails to understand the rationale behind the institutionalisation of the
European Social Dialogue as a technique to strengthen the role of the
European legislator by creating a conflict between the role of the European
Commission and the role of social partners and disqualifiying the
directive implementing agreements as a legislative act. Last but not least,
the Court tends to reduce subsidiarity to its vertical dimension and has
failed to do justice to the need to reduce inequality in the field of information
and consultation rights.