ABSTRACT. The paper critically addresses the large-scale deregulation of employment protection law in the EU member states, which basically started under the umbrella of flexicurity, in particular the EU’s so-called “better regulation agenda,” its follow-up “smart regulation agenda” and, finally, the European Commission’s annual country-specific recommendations and the memoranda of understanding with program countries within the framework of so-called anti-crisis measures taken since the outset of the financial and economic crisis. The rhetoric for such reforms denounces the complexity and the high costs linked to dismissal protection, in particular for small and medium enterprise. As the report shows, however, such narrative does not sustain sound legal investigation. Not only does the European Commission’s deregulation doctrine contradict primary and secondary European hard law on employment protection, but it has also helped to exacerbate precariousness at the workplace and, in combination with other reforms, the pauperization of workers, thus violating the fundamental rights of workers, as laid down in the Lisbon Treaty. pp. 26–80
JEL codes: F16; J08; J21; J41

Keywords: Europe; labor; dismissal protection; reform, crisis; deregulation

How to cite: Schomann, Isabelle (2015), "Labor Law Reforms in Europe: Deregulation of Dismissal Protection as Target," Psychosociological Issues in Human Resource Management 3(1): 26–80.

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European Trade Union Institute, Brussels, Belgium

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