European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions
Together for decent work and fair pay from farm to fork

Valuing migrant seasonal workers: EFFAT / FAI CISL project highlights strengthening union synergies as priorities


The FAI-CISL and EFFAT European project on “Valuing migrant seasonal workers through a sectoral social dialogue that will professionalise its contents” (VP 2015/001/0064) has come to an end this week with a conference in Rome. The initiative saw the participation of a large delegation of European trade unionists, academics, industry and EFFAT experts.

The two-day conference revealed that seasonal migrant work is a very complex scenario in need of a clear definition at European level. Delegates discussed how to cope with the criticalities stemming from this condition. Effective actions include: the need for a new, more coordinated model, centred on a more intensive social dialogue, the need for more communication between host and home countries; the establishment of networks between different institutions and sectors and the effective social collaboration at European level to govern the currently fragmented seasonal labour market.

The stories of two migrant workers that featured in the panel of the second day shed a light on the reality of migrant seasonal work.

Luigi Sbarra, FAI CISL’s General Secretary, pointed out in his final remarks that bargaining is the main tool to strengthen the rights and safeguards of seasonal work, both at European level and in individual countries, and he added that EFFAT and ETUC need to play a key role in defining the scope of a potential European negotiation.

EFFAT is the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions. As a European Trade Union Federation representing 120 national trade unions from 35 European countries, EFFAT defends the interests of more than 22 million workers towards the European Institutions, European employers’ associations and transnational companies. EFFAT is a member of the ETUC and the European regional organisation of the IUF.