On 13 October 2014 a group of EESC Members directly involved with the Committee's opinion on RPAS (remotely piloted aircraft systems; or: civilian drones) met a group of 20 Dutch RAPS stakeholders to discuss how EU policy makers can better respond to the urgent call from Member States to swiftly regulate this innovative aviation segment with a potentially huge economic impact.
At a time when EU citizens' trust in the European Union has reached an all-time low of 31% and concerns about unemployment and the economic situation dominate the public debate, it is essential to provide a response which is not nationalism or populism but European action.
At its Plenary Session held on 29 and 30 April 2014, the European Economic and Social Committee adopted an "Action Plan for Europe" which is practical and accessible (142 votes in favour, 96 against and 12 abstentions). The tangible steps and proposals contained in the action plan are based on three pillars which address the shortcomings of the European Union as it currently operates:
Congratulations to the EU and the 10 countries for the 10 years!
On 4 April 2014, the members of the Workers' Group of the EESC took part in a demonstration organised by the European Trade Union Confederation in Brussels. They joined several thousand demonstrators who were calling for a new path for Europe that favours equality and investments aiming at sustainable growth and quality jobs. Ahead of the upcoming European elections on the 25th of May, they called for citizens to vote for candidates who will change the way the EU is governed and who share the vision of a prosperous and socially inclusive Europe.
On 26 and 27 March 2014 an amazing youth event took place in Brussels. 84 students from the 28 EU Member States travelled across Europe to come to the EESC to have their say.
They debated passionately 14 initiatives for a better EU, in order to identify the Top 5, which were voted in the youth plenary session.
During the weekend of 28-30 March, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) as well as the Committee of the Regions (CoR) will switch off the façade lightings of their common buildings, situated on Rue Belliard, as part of the worldwide initiative "Earth Hour".
On 25 March 2014 the President of the Workers' Group, Georges Dassis, chaired a round table on the future of the economic and monetary union. Carmelo Cedrone, EESC Member and vice-president of its ECO section, presented his book "DOVE VA L'EURO?" during this meeting.
On the picture : EESC Vice-President Jane Morrice and , Speaker of the Parliament.
Supported by the Croatian EESC members, the EESC Communication Group and communication contact points held their annual meeting in Zagreb, Croatia, on 17 -18 March. Besides members exchanging best practices in the Communication area, the meeting provided for an exchange of views with Hrvoje Marušić, Assistant Minister for Foreign and European Affairs, and Dario Baron, Assistant Minister for Labour.
International Women’s day is a moment to celebrate the progress made towards gender equality and to thank all those working tirelessly to achieve it. It is also a time to reflect on reality. The reality is that the vast majority of women are still underpaid, under-represented and under-valued throughout the world from Europe to Asia, to Africa to the Americas and beyond. This is as true on the shop floor as it is in top management. It is as true in the home as it is in in the workplace. And it is as unacceptable as it is outrageous.
Together, we need to make a difference for the sake of humankind!
The EESC has appointed Luis PLANAS PUCHADES as Secretary-General. He takes up duty on 1 March 2014.
Mr Planas was minister for agriculture, fisheries and the environment in the regional government of Andalucía (Spain) until September 2013.
The European Commission has underlined the importance of the civil society's involvement in Europe 2020 strategy:
In 2013, the EESC was particularly involved in the discussions on the implementation of the Europe 2020 strategy as well as the European semester, namely through its Europe 2020 Steering Group. Many discussions were dedicated to the financial crisis and the response to it, and also unemployment, with a special focus on youth unemployment. ...