EESC presents its recommendations to the Commission

20/10/2015 – The newly elected President of the EESC, Georges Dassis, today met with the First Vice-President of the European Commission, Frans Timmermans. Mr Dassis presented to him the EESC’s recommendations for the Commission’s 2016 annual Work Programme. Among others, these included accelerated economic integration and convergence, strengthening democracy in the EU, reinforcing the European social model, and establishing a new migration policy.

EESC | EU and African civil society is ready to cooperate in tackling the refugee crisis

28/10/2015 – 2nd meeting of the EU-Africa Socio-Economic Actors Network adopts joint resolution – An approach based on full cooperation with African countries and respect for human rights in tackling the refugee flows into the EU has the full support of civil society from both continents. However, it is necessary to act now: “An action plan is not enough, it is important to equip it with the necessary funding and improve coordination and cooperation”. These were the main messages of the 2nd meeting of the EU-Africa Socio-Economic Actors Network in Brussels, organised by the European Economic and Social Committee on 27-28 October.

EASPD | New report: How can the European Semester help to implement the UN CRPD

12/11/2015 – EASPD releases its latest report recommending the EU to use the European Semester as a tool to support the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The EASPD report proposes recommendations on how the EU and its Member States can further develop disability friendly legislation and practices through the European Semester; especially in areas such as inclusive labour markets, inclusive education settings and living in the community. The report ends with several national messages from EASPD’s member organisationson the Country-Specific Recommendations, Country Reports and National Reform Programmes for their own respective Member States.

EAPN participates in the EP intergroup event for World Eradication of Poverty day

23/10/2015 – The Intergroup organized a special meeting to celebrate the world day, linked to the Global Day to eradicate poverty, to which EAPN participated. The key speaker was Mario Monti, followed by a panel debate, including the intergroup chair, Caritas Secretary General and ATD activists with direct experience of poverty. The session closed with the traditional Ceremony at the stone in the Parliament forecourt.

ETUI |Towards a desirable and feasible European unemployment benefit scheme

03/11/2015 – During the last ETUI Monthly Forum, Ilaria Maselli, Research Fellow at CEPS, and Frank Vandenbroucke, of the Catholic University of Leuven, discussed the added value of a European unemployment benefit scheme. They presented a preliminary assessment of a research project funded by the European Commission which studies the feasibility and desirability of establishing a European unemployment benefit scheme (EUBS).

ILO highlights impact of Social and Solidarity-based economy on decent jobs creation

On 19 October, the ILO participated in a Conference on “The Social and Solidarity-based economy, a driver for change in the South”, organized by the Centre Tricontinental (CETRI) of Louvain, Belgium. More than 10% of all jobs worldwide are provided in the social and solidarity-based economy (SEE), which puts people at the heart of its operations. The sector weathered the crisis successfully and it continues to grow. SEE-organizations generate decent work opportunities and stimulate and strengthen local development.

FNARS (Member of EAPN France) | The social challenge of the draft legislation on health must remain!

29/10/2015 – whereas Senators just voted on a new version of the draft legislation on health, civil-society organisations stress the need to take into account the importance of access to healthcare for all. This reform is a key opportunity to finally tackle health inequalities. They call on MPs to amend the text accordingly.

EUROCITIES statement on Roma inclusion in cities

04/11/2015 – Equality and non-discrimination are two of the core values of the European Union. The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU prohibits any discrimination based on race, colour, ethnic or social origin and its chapters on freedoms and solidarity establish the right to education, preventive healthcare and medical treatment. The charter also guarantees respect for cultural, religious and linguistic diversity. Yet, despite the existence of a robust anti-discrimination and human rights framework coupled with an EU framework on Roma inclusion, Roma still face widespread discrimination across Europe. The Roma are Europe’s largest minority. They continue to experience racially motivated attacks and anti-Gypsyism.