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CoE-FRA-Equinet-ENNHRI Thematic Platforms for Cooperation

January 28th 2016

The establishment of the cooperation platforms is the result of the joint conference of the Council of Europe (CoE), the European Network of Equality Bodies (Equinet), the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions (ENNHRI) and the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), which took place in October 2013 in Vienna. The conference set the scene for closer cooperation among national bodies and between national and international bodies. It was agreed to establish platforms for collaboration on pressing topics such as asylum and migration, Roma integration, combating hate crime, and advancing social and economic rights and socio-economic equality.

More information on the conference can be found on the page ’Strengthening fundamental rights protection together in a changing human rights landscape’ (Vienna, 7-8 October 2013). See also the joint statement by CoE, FRA, Equinet and ENNHRI on the establishment of the four Platforms.

CoE-FRA-Equinet-ENNHRI Platform on advancing social and economic rights and socio-economic equality

January 28th 2016

Background

The first meeting of the platform was organised on 15 October 2015 in Strasbourg by the Council of Europe (CoE). The meeting had a strong focus on the European Social Charter and its collective complaints mechanism, ensuring its greater use and better implementation. The context of the economic crisis and the need to secure economic and social (ECOSOC) rights in times of austerity were discussed, as a follow up to the CoE Commissioner for Human Rights’ paperon the same subject.

The Platform had its second meeting in Strasbourg on 28 January 2016, hosted by the Council of Europe. Several national equality bodies and human rights institutions attended, confirming commitment to advancing social and economic rights in Europe today. Equinet presented its newest perspective, detailing the experience of national equality bodies in protecting, respecting and fulfilling social and economic rights (see below for more details). Improving prevention of violations (monitoring and impact assessments), as well as effective justiciability once violations have taken place, were debated. The partners committed to increase information exchange and explore the possibility of common capacity building, as well as promoting greater visibility for the need to respect social and economic rights in an era when such rights are under increased pressure

Focus Areas

  • Domestic litigation for economic and social rights
  • Collective Complaints Mechanism of the European Social Charter
  • Discrimination in the enjoyment of economic and social rights

Equality Bodies contributing to the protection, respect and fulfillment of Economic and Social Rights

Equinet has produced a Perspective entitled Equality Bodies contributing to the protection, respect and fulfillment of Economic and Social Rights which aims to:

  • Explore the specific nature of the contribution that can be made by equality bodies to protecting and fulfilling economic and social rights.
  • Establish the contribution being made by equality bodies to the enjoyment of economic and social rights without discrimination.
  • Identify how this contribution might be further reinforced.

It is based on a round table debate facilitated within the Policy Formation Working Group of Equinet, the presentation of good practice exemplars by equality bodies on their work in contributing to economic and social rights, and a survey of Equinet members with responses from twenty equality bodies.

This perspective is a contribution to the work of Equinet within the platform for economic and social rights.

Equality Bodies contributing to the protection, respect and fulfillment of Economic and Social Rights (2015)
Equality Bodies contributing to the protection, respect and fulfillment of Economic and Social Rights (2015)


Further Information

Coordinator: Council of Europe

Equinet Contact: Katrine Steinfeld (katrine.steinfeld@equineteurope.org)

CoE-FRA-Equinet-ENNHRI Operational Platform for Roma Equality

January 28th 2016

Background

The first and second meeting of the Operational Platform on Roma Equality (OPRE) took place on 30 January 2015 and 3-4 December 2015 in Strasbourg, organised by the Council of Europe Special Representative on Roma.

Following the first meeting and the encouragement received there, Equinet applied for and was accepted as an observer in CAHROM, the CoE’s Ad Hoc Committee of Experts on Roma Issues.

The last meeting of the Operational Platform for Roma Equality (OPRE) was held on 7th and 8th June in Athens, Greece. Following this, a joint statement on evictions of Roma people was released in June 2016.

Focus Areas

  • Addressing and combating Anti-Gypsyism and multiple discrimination against Roma
  • Raising awareness about HR/Equality Institutions and their reporting mechanisms, and facilitating access to justice for Roma
  • Improving National Roma Integration Policies and their Implementation (especially in the fields of education and housing)

Further Information

Coordinator: Council of Europe Special Representative on Roma

Equinet Contact: Tamás Kádár (tamas.kadar@equineteurope.org)

Meetings 2016: 7-8 June, Athens

CoE-FRA-Equinet-ENNHRI Platform on Hate Crime

January 28th 2016

Background

The aims of the Platform on hate crime are to address gaps in combating hate crime, to contribute to a better understanding of the nature of hate crime and to contribute to improvement of recording and reporting of hate crime. The Platform will aim to enhance coordination, cooperation and exchange of information between national level institutions and European level institutions and structures, as well as to facilitate the cooperation between national level institutions.

The last meeting took place in Amsterdam on 29 April 2016, wherein it was decided to continue the cooperation among Platform members mostly based on information exchange (Newsletters, emails etc).

Focus Areas

  • Hate crime reporting
  • Hate speech
  • Victim support
  • Preventing hate crime

Further Information

Coordinator: European Union Agency of Fundamental Rights (FRA)

Equinet Contact: Sarah Cooke O’Dowd (sarah.cookeodowd@equineteurope.org)

CoE-FRA-Equinet-ENNHRI Platform on rights of migrants and asylum-seekers

January 28th 2016

Background

Asylum and migration issues pose some of the most pressing and serious human rights challenges in Europe today. The aim of the Platform members - national bodies and European institutions and networks - is to devise ways in which to work together more closely to attain concrete results for migrants in need.

The general aim of the thematic platform cooperation is to enhance coordination, cooperation and exchange of information between national level institutions and European level institutions and structures, as well as to facilitate the cooperation between national level institutions.

Focus Areas

  • Monitoring of forced returns
  • Conditions of detention and alternatives to detention
  • Unaccompanied and separated migrant children
  • Discrimination of migrants

Further Information

Coordinator: European Union Agency of Fundamental Rights (FRA)
Equinet contact: Jessica Machacova, Project Officer,jessica.machacova@equineteurope.org


Meetings 2016: The last meeting of this platform was held in Vienna, on 15-16 February 2016. A summary of the meeting and the new work plan of the Platform will be made available soon.