PROMOTE – Promoting collaboration and good practice in posting of workers in the agro-food sector
The Final Conference of the PROMOTE project was held on 16 December in Madrid. The conference begun with a presentation by the Secretary for Administration and Resources of UGT FICA, Lucía García-Quismondo, who presented the project.
Following this introduction, Mr. Javier Suquia, National Liaison Officer for Spain at the European Labour Authority (ELA), made the second intervention. Mr Suquía explained the process followed for the creation of the European Labour Authority, and presented the main achievements and challenges that this institution currently faces. Mr. Javier Suquia hilighteld one of the most important actions developed ELA so far focused on the agricultural sector.
The intervention of Mr. Javier Suquia was highly valued by all the speakers who intervened later, pointing out the high expectations placed on ELA as an effective instrument to fight against fraudulent practices in the agricultural sector.
Enrico Somaglia, Deputy Secretary General of the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism (EFFAT) gave an account of the most important demands that EFFAT has at this time. To this regard, he stressed the need for to improve Member States’ enforcement policies aiming to prevent the exploitation of workers in the sector, where important cases have already been brought to the Courts in different European countries.
Virginia Alarcón, from the representative of the Transnational Labour Unit of the State Agency for Labour and Social Security Inspection (OEITSS), presented the latest actions carried out by her unit in the monitoring and prevention of fraud in the agricultural sector. Moreover, she stressed the role that ELA can play to improve efficiency of enforcement policies
The Secretary General of UGT FICA, Pedro Hojas, stressed in his speech that the Federation will continue supporting any campaign or mobilisation that contributes to support the dignity of the of seasonal workers, one of the demands sustained over time by UGT FICA. He also pointed out that this final conference is the closing of a first phase of a long-germ processes where new projects and actions will be developed with a view to fight against abuse and exploitation of agriculture workers.
Following the intervention of Mr. Pedro Hojas, three speakers took the floor, namely Mohamed Saady, president of the Italian immigrant association ANOLF; Ana María Corral, head of the Migration Area of UGT; Ion Paunel, president of the Romanian agricultural producers. The three speakers agreed on the diagnosis of the situation:
Finally, each of the project parnter leaders intervened to point out the most important findings and the challenges faced by workers in the sector in the different countries: Fatima Mariosa, from FAI CIL (IT); Tudor Dorobantu representing ICDI (RO); Angela Rubio from UGT FICA (ES) and Marc Caballero, from Notus-asr, who was also in charge of presenting the final report of the project.
Julia Frías, notus-asr, was in charge of presenting the different deliverables produced by the project, mainly the Good Practice Guide.
The conference was closed by the secretary of the Agri-Food Sector of UGT FICA, Sebastián Serena, who criticised that “160,000 out of the 700,000 workers in the sector in Spain are immigrants who are facing fraud and exploitation”. For this reason, Mr. Serena pointed out the importance of strengthening ELA and promoting campaigns such as Rights4AllSeasons.