The European Pillar of Social Rights, announced in 2017, sets out 20 key principles and rights that are essential for fair and well-functioning labour markets and social protection systems.

Since then, the European Commission has presented several actions based on each principle of the Pillar, with additional actions planned to further strengthen social rights in the EU. 

At the Porto Social Summit, last May, EU leaders adopted the Porto Declaration on social affairs, setting headline targets to translate the Principles of the Pillar into concrete actions to benefit citizens by 2030. These initiatives are found in the European Pillar of Social Rights Action Plan, published by the Commission in June.

The Action Plan sets three headline targets to be reached by 2030: at least 78% of the population aged 20 to 64 should be in employment (currently 72.4%); at least 60% of all adults should be participating in training every year (37% in 2016); a reduction of at least 15 million in the number of people at risk of poverty or social exclusion. In 2019, around 91 million persons (18 million of which were minors) were at risk of poverty or social exclusion.