As you read this text, written by an official who has been working in the European institutions for 19 years, please do not think that it is devoid of empathy towards our colleagues who are contract agents (CA) or temporary agents (TA), quite the contrary!
Looking at precariousness brings to my mind the time when I myself started to work at the European Commission via a temping agency, with a contract that ended every Friday, with no certainty that it would be extended for the following week.
It is hard to plan family life when you are on a weekly schedule and have two small children to look after…
And now you hear that your Directorate General is going to restructure: what will happen to me? Will I be needed somewhere? At this stage, you have to take the plunge, run to the human resources manager and offer your services, accept a position below your qualifications, for one year but which at least allows you to remain in the Directorate-General with an auxiliary agent contract (now know as contract agent).
It is difficult at this stage to plan the purchase of a house with a one-year fixed-term contract, as the banks do not accept your file… Then your one-year contract is renewed for another year, then another year…
During this period of stress and uncertainty, you know that you have to