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MIL OSI Translation. Region: Germany / Deutschland –

Source: CDU CSU

Madam President! Ladies and gentlemen! Digitization has experienced a boost in the corona crisis. Video conferences, home office, and mobile working have made a significant contribution to keeping our economic life going. The positive experiences from everyday working life show that digital transformation is not a specter. On the contrary: it makes our economy more flexible and functional. The digital transformation of the world of work is also an additional benefit for employees. The compatibility of work, family and leisure time becomes noticeably better. The work comes to the people and not the other way around.

That is also what the employees want. This is also proven by a current survey by the CSU in the Bundestag – representative of course –

(Laughter from the FDP and MPs from the CDU / CSU)

from the beginning of October 2020. When asked which measures the policy should implement so that family and work can be better reconciled, 64 percent, so quite a lot, answered: flexible working hours. That’s what 64 percent want. Another 10 percent want a right to work from home. That means: two thirds of employees want more flexibility. This is a confirmation of our course. A modern world of work needs more flexibility in terms of working hours, the place of work and, of course, the work structures. The FDP’s proposal is actually very nice. After the very awkward speech by your chairman this morning, what you said today, dear Johannes, is definitely more meaningful.

(Merriment among members of the CDU / CSU – Stephan Thomae [FDP]: Even my colleague Stracke recognized that!)

The key to more flexible working is actually a reform of the Working Hours Act. Where the Working Hours Act simply no longer fits – and the examples that Johannes gave are quite practical – it also has to be changed,

(Beate Müller-Gemmeke [BÜNDNIS 90 / DIE GRÜNEN]: No, you just have to make a collective agreement!)

because it no longer corresponds to reality. And we want that too: We want to abolish the statutory maximum working hours per day and instead enable maximum working hours per week.

(Stephan Thomae [FDP]: Let’s go!)

Flexi week instead of a rigid eight-hour day – that is a modern approach to the work of the future, and that also means more freedom for flexible agreements.

(Applause from the FDP and from members of the CDU / CSU)

– Even the CDU claps alongside the FDP.

(Laughter from the FDP – applause from Abg. Carl-Julius Cronenberg [FDP])

This not only benefits those who can work from home, but actually all employees, including those who are employed in so-called attendance industries, for example. We therefore want to use the leeway of the EU Working Time Directive.

It is also clear that more flexibility during the week, colleague from the Left, of course does not mean working longer overall.

(Beate Müller-Gemmeke [BÜNDNIS 90 / DIE GRÜNEN]: But 14 hours a day, or what? Is it still possible?)

The need to document working hours, for example, also contributes to this. The European Court of Justice has made that clear to us again.

(Beate Müller-Gemmeke [BÜNDNIS 90 / DIE GRÜNEN]: The colleague Heilmann spoke differently!)

Documentation exists in both areas, and that’s why both go together. The Working Hours Act is also an employee protection act, and of course we do not want to change anything.

(Shout from the LEFT: Yes! But that is exactly what you are doing with your request!)

At the beginning of October, Federal Minister Heil demanded a legal right to work from home. We as a Union reject such a legal claim. Incidentally, it has not even been agreed in the coalition. We want a right of discussion; we have laid down what is to come. If there were a legal right to work from home, it would not be in line with life if it were not meaningfully linked to working time law. And that’s why Heil is now taking the second step before the first.

(Dr. Martin Rosemann [SPD]: Yes, what now?)

We say: the order has to be right.

(Beate Müller-Gemmeke [BÜNDNIS 90 / DIE GRÜNEN]: Home office works with the normal working hours law!)

Of course, I also have sympathy for what the FDP is proposing, namely extensive tariff opening clauses with regard to rest periods.

(Shout from the LEFT: You are a real punishment!)

– Suddenly you don’t want a collective agreement any more: on the one hand, yes, but if the parties to the collective agreement agree something in this area on the other, then again it is not right. A strange understanding of collective bargaining parties and autonomy in this area!

(Applause from the FDP and from members of the CDU / CSU – Beate Müller-Gemmeke [BÜNDNIS 90 / DIE GRÜNEN]: You can do that today!)

Only when adjustments are made to the Working Hours Act is it ultimately worthwhile to debate the legal structure of mobile work.

(Beate Müller-Gemmeke [BÜNDNIS 90 / DIE GRÜNEN]: Can you justify that? – Shout from Deputy Alexander Ulrich [DIE LINKE])

Digital technologies have seen a boost. We must now use this boost for a modern working environment of the future.

(Applause from the CDU / CSU – Stephan Thomae [FDP]: Reasonable views, healthy Allgäu pragmatism! – Alexander Ulrich [DIE LINKE]: That really pisses me off! It’s a protective law!)


EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.

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