Voting begins in elections for works councils and safety committees

More than 2 million workers will have the chance to elect their representatives on works councils and prevention bodies between 13 and 26 May. 

Some 4,000 works councils and 7,000 committees for prevention and protection at work are being elected in more than 7,000 for-profit and non-profit enterprises across Belgium.

Social elections take place every four years. The last elections took place in 2020 but were postponed from spring to autumn due to the pandemic. The 2020 elections did not lead to major changes in the balance of power between the unions, with Christian union ACV remaining the largest.

Advisory role

ACV secured 55.71 per cent of seats on works councils across the country, a slight fall from 55.85 per cent four years earlier. Socialist union ABVV won 33.46 per cent of the vote, down from 33.94 per cent in the previous election. The liberal ACLVB rose from 8.71 to 9.47 per cent of seats.

Among prevention committees, ACV accounted for 57.5 per cent of seats in the 2020 elections, ABVV 33.25 per cent and ACLVB 9.26 per cent. 

The procedure for the establishment of a works council is initiated as soon as an enterprise has 100 employees; a prevention committee should be set up in companies with 50 employees.

A works council includes employer and staff representatives and focuses on the finances and work organisation of a business. The employer must provide the council with information on significant planned changes to the organisation. A prevention committee is a joint committee with an advisory role in relation to welfare and occupational safety policy. 



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