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.
In the context of the own-initiative opinion on Volunteers – Citizens building the future of Europe, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is organising a remote public hearing on Monday 20 September 2021. The aim of the hearing is to gather the points of view of social partners and other civil society organisations, experts and coordinators of projects related to volunteering, on the topic, and to hold a discussion on the impact of civil society trends for volunteering and the current state of play of volunteering at European level.
The Commission proposed in March 2021 new pay transparency measures, such as pay information for job seekers, a right to know the pay levels for workers doing the same work, as well as gender pay gap reporting obligations for big companies. The proposal aims to strengthen the tools for workers to claim their rights and facilitate access to justice. Employers will not be allowed to ask job seekers for their pay history and they will have to provide pay related anonymised data upon employee request. Employees will also have the right to compensation for discrimination in pay.
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.
In the context of the opinion on a "Union of equality: EU anti-racism action plan 2020-2025", the European Economic and Social Committee is organising a virtual public hearing on 18 March. The aim of the hearing is to gather the points of view of international organisations, European platforms for human rights and the fight against racism, and representatives of European institutions, on key measures of the action plan, and to discuss how to tackle racism and racial discrimination more effectively in the EU.
The President referred to the shortcomings of the ECI legislation and the problems encountered by organisers in the first years. He announced that the EESC was offering organisers of registered ECIs the opportunity to have the text presenting their ECI translated, thus addressing one of the most pressing problems for new ECIs and presented the European Passport to Active Citizenship.
An active civil society was a means of ensuring active participation. The objective would be to make the ECI efficient and practical, eliminate the technical obstacles and improve communication.The ECI should remain in the mainstream of EU policies to unblock the process of European integration...
One year after the launch of the European Citizens' Initiative (ECI), now is a good time to assess this first year, hear the experiences of organisers, draw conclusions from the lessons learnt, devise intermediate solutions and start preparing for the 2015 revision of the regulation.
The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) is one of the major innovations of the Treaty of Lisbon, aimed at increasing direct democracy in the EU. The initiative enables one million EU citizens, who are nationals of at least one quarter of the Member States, to call directly on the European Commission to propose a legal act in an area within the competences of the EU.
The incoming Croatian Presidency has requested the EESC to draft an opinion on the topic of "The effects of campaigns on participation in political decision-making".
In view of the European elections and campaigns aimed at informing European citizens conducted by the institutions of the European Union and the Member States, a public hearing will be held in the morning of Wednesday 5 February, at the EESC. The aim of the hearing is to examine the current state of play and lessons learned from the May 2019 elections, and to look at the ways forward, i.e. how to enhance participation and disable disinformation of European citizens..