1st People experiencing poverty EU meeting:
When the Lisbon Strategy was approved, EAPN made all the efforts possible to include in the Open Method of Coordination an annual European meeting of people experiencing poverty formally as part of the process. However it was not possible to reach the necessary political commitment for that to happen. Nevertheless and thanks to the effort and support of the Belgium Presidency (2nd Semester of 2001) of the EU, the first meeting took place and from then –with ups and downs (in terms of the EC and Presidencies support) it happened every year (with the exception of 2002). The main idea was that those meetings should be part of a larger process of participation at the national and local levels and that the European meeting were supposed to be a moment to monitor de implementation of the Lisbon Objectives. Afterwards, the meetings were supposed to monitor the implementation of the Europe 2020 objectives. It is important to mention that this process was crucial for the participation of people experiencing poverty in the network in a more structured way. In reality the European meeting is an “excuse” for all the work promoted at the national level.
12th GA – Brussels (Belgium)
Laeken European Council (December):
Approval of Laeken Indicators for Social Inclusion. TheLaeken indicators is a set of common European statistical indicators on poverty and social exclusion, established at the European Council of December 2001 in the Brussels suburb of Laeken. They were developed as part of the Lisbon Strategy, of the previous year, which envisioned the coordination of European social policies at country level based on a set of common goals. It is relevant to mention that some EAPN members, leaded by the Belgian Network, was at that moment running a project exactly devoted to the creation of Social Indicators that could qualify the information from quantitative indicators produced by the institutions, namely by counting with a strong participation of people experiencing poverty.