Chamber of Deputies, 5th election term, 2006-2010
Committee on Social Policy
The Committee on Social Policy has its historical roots in the Chamber of Deputies of the First Republic, its direct historical predecessor being the Social-Political Committee, which subsequently merged with the Health Committee and the Welfare Committee to form a new Social-Political Committee. More recently, the Social-Political Committee was joined with the State Employment Committee, with a special committee being established for the issues of social and pension insurance. After World War II, no independent committee for social policy was established for several electoral terms of the National Assembly; only the Committee on Health Care was in operation. A separate Committee on Social Policy was re-established in the 1970s.
Following the establishment of the independent Czech Republic in 1993, a Committee on Social Policy and Health Care operated in the Chamber of Deputies until 2006, addressing the agenda of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and the Ministry of Health. To that end, the Committee also discussed the relevant chapters of the state budget proposal and the final state budgetary account. An important part of the Committee for Social Policy and Health Care’s work was the continuous transformation of social legislation, implemented simultaneously with the harmonisation of the Czech legal system with EU law prior to the Czech Republic’s accession to the European Union. In 2006, a new Labour Code was discussed within the Committee and subsequently adopted by the Parliament.
Current Agenda – 5th Electoral Term of the Chamber of Deputies
Within is activity, the Committee on Social Policy discusses primarily bills presented by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs but also by other competent authorities whose bills have a social dimension. The most important bills have included the bills amending the Act on Premiums for Social Security and Contributions to the State Employment Policy, the Pension Insurance Act and an amendment to the Employment Act.
Monitoring the Government
The Committee on Social Policy monitors the Government’s activities especially within its sphere of competence. For this purpose, it cooperates not only with the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs but also with other executive bodies. The Committee invites the Members of the Government to join its meetings. The Committee also discusses relevant chapters of the state budget.
Foreign Relations and Other Activities
The Committee on Social Policy maintains foreign contacts with partner committees or also ministries in Europe and the world. One of the Committee’s activities given the most emphasis is cooperation within the EU organisational structure. In addition, the Committee organises specialised seminars and conferences on current legislative issues as well.
Committee meetings are convened and conducted by the Chairperson. The Committee decides by an absolute majority of the members present; its meetings are essentially open to the public.