Once upon a time, there were colleagues who patrolled the corridors of our buildings, distributing mail. They were often the first people we met in the morning and those with whom we exchanged a few words. These were messengers!

Unfortunately, this job is more and more devalued by our administration.

Initially, messengers were decentralized under the responsibility of each DG and newcomers were hired as contract agents, with, of course, much lower wages. Since 2000, the number of messengers has been reduced from 340 to 266 (data: 2010), a fall of almost 22% versus a constant increase of Commission staff.

The main task is mail distribution and collection. But Messengers are also called upon to carry out security tasks, and undertake the monitoring and verification of cleanliness in buildings as well as providing a first aid service. However, DGs assign them additional tasks which are not provided for in their job description. The agreement in force (MAP 2000), which sets a fixed number of rounds per day (minimum 3) to be run, is not always respected by DGs. That endangers the proper functioning and quality of service in many buildings.

Given the reduction of staff, the number of back-ups increases and replacements are expected to perform not only their own tasks but also the work of their absent colleagues. On top of that, they are often forced to move to other buildings and to take over the additional tasks of absent colleagues (archiving, filing, supply management, etc.). 

It is hard for them to be in a position to follow training courses that should be available to each and every employee of our institution. 

TAO-AFI demands an immediate opening of negotiations between unions and DG HR to bring about the correct application of the existing agreement (MAP 2000), to urge DGs and Offices to respect these rules and to set out concrete measures for the improvement of working conditions for messengers