This document is the report of an EAPN conference which was held in Brussels on 22 and 23 November 2001.
In May 1999, EAPN called for a European strategy to tackle social exclusion to be implemented, with common objectives, guidelines, and mutual peer assessments, stressing the need to promote effective access for all to fundamental rights, integrated action, partnership and participation.
The Lisbon European Council officially launched the strategy for inclusion in March 2000. The Nice European Council completed the approach in December 2000 by spelling out the objectives. The national governments agreed to elaborate two-yearly national action plans for social inclusion. The first wave of plans was published in summer 2001 and analysed by the European Commission as the basis of a joint report which the Laeken Council dubbed “an important element in the policy defined at Lisbon”.
At the same time, EAPN took its own hard look at the plans. Analyses by each national network were synthesized at European level, and the corresponding publications were used as the basis for the work done at the conference.