EESC | TTIP – what’s in it for the social partners? EESC heralded constructive dialogue with social partners

18/11/2015 – The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), together with the Luxembourg Presidency, the European Parliament and the Commission, organised a high-level conference on the Transatlantic Trade, Investment and Partnership Agreement (TTIP) that the United States and Europe have been negotiating for nearly two and half years. Participants called for more transparency, better involvement of social partners and in particular for comprehensive information and communication on all impacts of TTIP – both positive and negative – as discussions showed that many questions remain open, which Commissioner Malmström strove to answer as clearly as possible. “Only an agreement which has the broad support of the social partners and civil society will be a good and sustainable agreement”, was the bottom line. 

EESC | Grassroots organisations from Germany and Finland win first prize in the EESC 2015 Civil Society Prize for combating poverty

10/12/2015 – The five winning initiatives present snap-shots of what is being done by thousands of voluntary groups and NGOs across Europe. Each of the projects tackles the 2015 theme “Combating poverty” in its own way and demonstrates that poverty undermines all aspects of well-being in society, including education, long-term health, housing, access to employment and family relationships.

EESC | “Migration needs both – humanity and clear rules”. EESC calls for a common European asylum and migration policy

10/12/2015 – Europe needs a truly common European asylum system with harmonised procedures throughout Europe. In the current complex situation, Europe needs to secure its borders in a European rather than a national effort while at the same time assisting asylum seekers outside the EU. Moreover, it has to put in place an effective immigration policy which is transparent, clearly outlining who will have a chance to immigrate and welcoming those newcomers by supporting their start in the respective EU Member State.

EP | Julie Ward: Terrorist attacks were the result of exclusion, not multiculturalism

08/12/2015 – Recent events in Europe have brought the issues of marginalisation and extremism to the forefront of public debate. On 7 December Parliament’s culture committee adopted a report on the role of intercultural dialogue, cultural diversity and education in promoting EU fundamental values. Ahead of the vote, we spoke to report author Julie Ward, a UK member of the S&D: “We have one world and we have to find some way of being mutually respectful and tolerant of each other.”

Video: “It’s Time To Get Radical On Inequality” by Joseph Stiglitz

11/12/2015 – Nobel laureate Stiglitz, author of The Price of Inequality and The Great Divide, studies the forces driving inequality and what is at stake if it continues. In his view, bad economic thinking deserves part of the blame — fanciful ideas like trickle-down and the notion that economists should try to increase the size of the economic pie and let the politicians worry about distribution. On the contrary, Stiglitz sees distribution as a problem economists must confront. He warns that an economic system that doesn’t raise standards of living for most Americans is a failure.