Press releases

  • Reference number

    Europe needs a truly common European asylum system with harmonised procedures throughout Europe. In the current complex situation, Europe needs to secure its borders in a European rather than a national effort while at the same time assisting asylum seekers outside the EU. Moreover, it has to put in place an effective immigration policy which is transparent, clearly outlining who will have a chance to immigrate and welcoming those newcomers by supporting their start in the respective EU Member State.

  • Reference number

    The five winning initiatives present snap-shots of what is being done by thousands of voluntary groups and NGOs across Europe. Each of the projects tackles the 2015 theme “Combating poverty” in its own way and demonstrates that poverty undermines all aspects of well-being in society, including education, long-term health, housing, access to employment and family relationships.

    "In awarding the 2015 Civil Society Prize, the EESC rewards outstanding initiatives aimed at combating poverty in Europe by improving economic and social inclusion. I am proud to be able to congratulate the honourable winners of the 2015 EESC Civil Society Prize on their achievements. I also take this opportunity to commend, on behalf of all my colleagues representing European civil society vis-a vis the institutions, all the women and men fighting courageously to alleviate suffering, to reduce the impact of poverty – or banish it altogether –  in their own countries", said the EESC President George Dassis.

  • Reference number

    Aviation has a very broad impact on economic growth. The air transport system generates benefits beyond the immediate aviation industry. As well as connectivity and mobility for citizens and businesses, they include securing investments, supplying jobs and improving productivity and innovation - thus contributing to society's welfare. The aviation sector employs almost 2 million people and contributes EURO 110 billion to Europe's economy.[1]


  • Reference number

    In the hot phase of the COP21 talks the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) again urges world leaders to deliver an ambitious, legally-binding agreement that will be consistent with the overall objective of keeping global warming below the 2°C threshold.

    "I call on the responsibility of European and world leaders and want to remind them that COP21 is decisive for the future of our planet and in particular the people who live on it. When you are serious with the Sustainable Development Goals, when you are serious with fighting poverty, then you have to act now. Failure is not an option", was EESC President Georges Dassis again very clear and powerful in his message to the negotiators at COP21.

  • Copyright Andreas Reeg
    Reference number

    More than 120 million people in the EU face the risk of poverty or social exclusion[1]

    Grassroots organisations working to alleviate poverty in Germany, Ireland, France, Poland and Finland show the way in providing direct assistance to those in need.  The European Economic and Social Committee has dedicated the 2015 European Civil Society Prize to organisations distinguishing themselves through their creativity and success in combatting poverty.

    Poverty and social exclusion includes many multi-faceted challenges such as housing, health, education, access to employment, indebtedness and addiction, to name but a few. Civil society organisations across the European Union are actively addressing these issues.  Activities often focus on local needs and – crucially – directly involve people experiencing poverty themselves in their implementation.


  • Reference number

    On the eve of COP 21, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) together with the Committee of the Regions (CoR) have urged negotiators in Paris not to fail, sending a clear message: Real action on climate and towards low-carbon transition is taking place outside of the political decision-making process, and it is now time for the contribution of civil-society actors as well as local and regional authorities to be framed in a multi-level governance system.

  • Reference number

    More than 200 participants explored and debated work organisation and skill development practices that benefit both employers and employees at a joint seminar organised by Cedefop, Eurofound and the EESC in Brussels on 19 November.

    The seminar was an opportunity to present to policymakers, academics, practitioners and representatives from national authorities, European institutions, enterprises and trade unions the findings of Eurofound's Third European Company Survey and Cedefop's European Skills and Jobs Survey.

  • Reference number

    When discovering there was no help, no support nor advice for her and her son, Robbie, victim of a serious attack in Greece that left him with lifelong brain injuries, Maggie Hughes decided to take on the fight for the rights of victims. This fight led her from a helpless situation in 2008 in Crete to having helped influence EU legislation to support victims of crime in the EU in 2012 and to get a final judgement in Robbie's case in September 2015.

  • Reference number

    Yesterday the EESC President, Georges Dassis, met Sandro Gozi, Italian Secretary of State of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers responsible for European policies, in the presence of Joost Van Iersel, President of the EESC's Section for Economic and Monetary Union and Economic and Social Cohesion (ECO) and Carmelo Cerdone, Vice-President of the Section. The meeting focused on the process of the European integration and especially the completion of the EMU in the light of the recent Five Presidents' Report ( and the Commission's Deepening EMU Package (

  • Reference number

    During the European week for combating organised crime, the EESC is looking at ways of improving collaboration between civil society and the local authorities in combating the scourge of organised crime.

    In Europe, some 3 600 organised criminal groups and networks are involved in the heinous business of crime, ranging from trafficking in human beings and smuggling migrants, arms, drugs, rare animal species and cultural artefacts, to illicit trade in fake medicines. These are all potential sources of revenue for the Mafia, transnational criminal organisations and terrorist groups.