Recent developments in the US and some European countries have shown that rights acquired by women are not irreversible. This particularly applies to sexual and reproductive health and rights. These questions are a matter of individual rights but also of public health, as sexual and reproductive health services are an essential part of comprehensive healthcare provision. Societal debates on the questions tend more and more towards polarisation, at the expense of women who can become deprived of their free and informed choice. The hearing will gather the view of civil society on these developments.
An Grúpa ad hoc um Chearta Bunúsacha agus an Smacht Reachta - Related Events
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The EESC FRRL Group's annual conference will provide a platform for debate of the European Commission's third Report on the Rule of Law (July 2022), which for the first time entails country specific recommendations.
It will gather EESC Members, civil society representatives (including social partners), EU institutions and other stakeholders to discuss the main developments in the EU in the area of fundamental rights and the rule of law over the past year.
On the occasion of the conference, the FRRL Group will issue its second synthesis report covering the visits carried out in 2020-2021.
Over the last years, the EU founding values have been increasingly challenged, making the consensus on which they are based seem more fragile than ever. While the EU has addressed these threats by becoming more active in defence of democracy, fundamental rights, the rule of law, discourses have also risen portraying such action as political battles based on unclear or relative criteria.
Participants in the hearing will discuss how to address this phenomenon, and more generally how to better communicate fundamental rights and the rule of law to the whole population.
Participants in the hearing will discuss how fundamental rights and the rule of law are interconnected and ineffective without each other. Speakers will offer an overview of key rule of law principles and what they mean for the daily lives of the European population. They will also discuss the various factors which are used to measure a country's performance in the area. Finally, they will evoke the current trends in Slovakia, in the Visegrad Group region, and in the European Union in general.
This hearing will be an in-person meeting (no online connection) in Bratislava, Slovakia. Places are limited – should you be interested in taking part, please contact EESC-rights-Rule-Law.
The EU has adopted legislation covering various grounds of discrimination in a variety of policy areas, in particular employment, to meet its aim of combating all forms of discrimination. However, gaps still exist as Member States have not yet agreed on a horizontal Directive on non-discrimination outside of the labour market proposed in 2008.
This hearing with the participation of EU institutions and civil society organisations in the framework of the preparation of an EESC own-initiative aims at closing the gaps and identifying ways to improve equality in Europe, including with an Equal Treatment Directive.
The hearing will gather stakeholders to discuss the proposal by the European Commission to extend the list of EU crimes referred to in Article 83(1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) to all forms of hate crime and hate speech.
This initiative is part of the EU’s response to extremist ideologies online and more specifically to the proliferation of racist and xenophobic hate speech on the internet.
The hearing will feed in the preparation of the EESC Opinion on the subject.
While Europe and its societies are still in the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic and with the Conference on the Future of Europe in its closing stages, the EESC will be holding its annual Civil Society Days in March 2022.
The conference is a joint European Commission-EESC event to discuss the annual report on the application of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, issued by the Commission in December 2021.
The conference will cover developments in the EU in the area of fundamental rights and the rule of law in 2020-2021. It will offer a space for dialogue amongst stakeholders, in particular the ones which contributed to country visits led by the EESC Fundamental Rights and Rule of Law (FRRL) Group in 2020-2021 and to the first two European Commission Rule of Law Reports published in 2020 and 2021. The discussions during the day, including in parallel breakout sessions, will focus on the four key themes which structure the European Rule of Law Mechanism: Justice, Media, Corruption, Checks and balances.
To improve the implementation of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights it is necessary to empower civil society organisations, rights defenders and justice practitioners, and strengthen people’s awareness of their rights under the Charter. CSOs and social partners are operating at grassroots levels and can help spread awareness and foster implementation. Moreover, the social partners have a special role in contributing to the implementation and defence of socio-economic fundamental rights.
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