The EESC issues between 160 and 190 opinions and information reports a year.
It also organises several annual initiatives and events with a focus on civil society and citizens’ participation such as the Civil Society Prize, the Civil Society Days, the Your Europe, Your Say youth plenary and the ECI Day.
The EESC brings together representatives from all areas of organised civil society, who give their independent advice on EU policies and legislation. The EESC's326 Members are organised into three groups: Employers, Workers and Various Interests.
The EESC has six sections, specialising in concrete topics of relevance to the citizens of the European Union, ranging from social to economic affairs, energy, environment, external relations or the internal market.
identifying obstacles, solutions and good practices
EESC, Rue Belliard 99, 1040
Encouraging the Roma community's participation in political life at local, national and European level is one of the objectives of the EU Roma strategic framework 2020-2030. At an estimated 10-12 million, the Roma community constitutes the largest minority in Europe. Yet, in many countries the Roma are not part of the decision-making process, finding themselves in some cases deliberately excluded, intimidated or prevented from representing their rights and needs. Lack of information on the electoral processes itself, together with the vulnerability and difficulties presented by their segregated and poor living conditions, can also impact their possibilities for proper participation in the political scenario. The hearing will explore further the reasons behind the Roma's lack of participation in the political sphere, look into best practices and discuss possible actions that can help increase their participation.
19 October 2023 | 09:30 - 13:00 | EESC | Room JDE60 | Rue Belliard 99, 1040
The permanent group on Inclusion of the Roma is organising a public hearing on 19 October 2023 on ''Combatting antigypsyism: identifying possible measures''. Antigypsyism remains a key challenge for the Roma, hindering their prospects. The new EU Roma strategic framework foresees cutting the proportion of Roma experiencing discrimination by at least half by 2030. The hearing will look at the current situation with regard to antigypsyism, discussing measures foreseen in the national strategic frameworks aimed to tackle antigypsyism and possible responses to this problem.
The permanent group on Inclusion of the Roma is organising a public hearing on 22 June 2023 on ''The labour market situation and Roma workers' rights in a time of economic crisis''. At a time of rising inflation across Europe, with sharp increases on food stuffs and energy, this hearing will be looking at the situation of Roma workers in the labour market. It will discuss discrimination in employment and look at best practices aimed at resolving these situations in accordance with the EU Charter of Fundamental rights, the new EU Roma Strategic Framework and the European Pillar of Social Rights.
Evaluation and responses to the Roma housing situation
Rue Belliard 99, 1040
The permanent group on Inclusion of the Roma is organising a public hearing on 31 March 2023 on ''Relieving housing precarity amongst the Roma: evaluation and responses to the Roma housing situation''. The Roma are amongst the most deprived communities in Europe, some of them living in segregated areas and inadequate housing conditions. The hearing will look at the housing situation of the Roma population, focusing on its financing and on the problem of segregation. It will look at the objectives of the EU Roma strategic framework 2020-2030 in relation to housing, discussing recommendations and identifying best practices.
This hearing will look at the state of play of the national Roma strategic frameworks in the Member States. It will look at some of the plans that these incorporate and discuss possible good practices.
The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in major economic and social impacts across the EU, worsening the already precarious situation of marginalised communities, amongst them the Roma. The hearing aims to look at the Covid situation for the Roma community living in settlements, as well as their access to services, particularly health services. It will then discuss the measures that are needed to address the situation, with the participation of organisations from various Member States.
The new Roma framework presents seven areas of focus for the next 10 years: fighting antigypsyism and discrimination; reducing poverty and social exclusion; promoting Roma participation; access to quality education; access to quality and sustainable employment; improving Roma health and equal access to housing. It provides targets to be attained by 2030 and recommendations for their attainment.
The hearing aims to look at the proposals and plans outlined in the new Roma framework in more detail. It will also include a discussion with civil society organisations, giving them the opportunity to voice their views and expectations thereon.
At its hearing of 14 October, the Study Group on the Inclusion of the Roma will be discussing the housing situation of the Roma and how to better tackle the ongoing segregation they are still facing today.
At its hearing on 11 June (10.00-13.00 in meeting room VMA3), the Study Group on the Inclusion of the Roma will be discussing the employment and recruitment situation for the Roma and the discriminatory practices they endure in this regard.
The hearing will seek to discuss the existing forms of discrimination, their extent, as well as the effectiveness or otherwise of actions such as the public works' scheme in improving the Roma's situation in the labour market. It will identify best practices undertaken in Member States and discuss recommendations to counter discrimination in employment and recruitment.