Amid a projected rise in the number of people at risk of poverty, adequate minimum income is a necessary condition to ensure a dignified life for many Europeans. To make sure it is available to all those who need it, Member States should put in place transparent and non-discriminatory criteria for people to obtain it.
Poverty must always be combated in the EU and in the rest of the world. This is all the more important as the cost of living has increased significantly since the onset of the war in Ukraine. While civil society organisations provide important solutions to tackle the effects of poverty, it is clear that future policy measures must be poverty-proof. These are the conclusions of a discussion organised by the Civil Society Organisations' Group of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) on 22 March 2023. The event was attended by high-level guest speakers, including Italy's Minister for Labour and Social Policies, Marina Elvira Calderone.
As the number of EU households unable to warm their homes is likely to grow and with energy annual inflation hitting over 40%, the EU and the Member States should adopt and implement urgent measures to prevent and tackle energy poverty threatening Europeans
Drastically improving the energy efficiency of Europe's buildings, increasing the use of renewables and educating consumers on energy savings are among the main prerequisites for reducing the number of energy poor in the EU in the long term.
EESC plenary debate with Olivier De Schutter, UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights
Poverty and the role of civil society organisations in combatting it will be the focus of his Presidency
With the start of the 2020-2025 term of office of the EESC, Séamus Boland takes over the Presidency of the its Diversity Europe Group. Members confirmed his new role for the next two and a half years during the first group meeting of the new term held today, 27 October. Mr Boland's Presidency will focus on the topic of "Poverty and the role of civil society organisations in combatting it".
The EESC draws mixed conclusions from the European Commission's growth survey
Statement of the President of the Employers' Group
On 20 February 2019 the EESC adopted an opinion calling for an EU framework directive on minimum income. The Employers' Group fully shares the view of the EESC that fighting against poverty is a necessity. However, for us the instrument proposed in the opinion is not the correct one. For this reason, the Group tabled a counter-opinion, presenting its views on measures needed to reduce poverty. The counter opinion was supported by almost 40% of the EESC Members.
The Diversity Europe Group recently organised a structured brainstorming session aiming at encouraging its Members to think out of the box and to come up with ideas to feed into proposals for the Sibiu Summit on the Future of Europe. This session kick-started our Group's contribution to the EESC Roadmap 'From Cracow to Sibiu and beyond'.