Equinet Newsbook - November 2016

Language: English
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Equinet factsheet and compendium of good practices on integration of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers

Migration/Integration: The factsheet and compendium of good practices aim to summarise the contribution of equality bodies to the integration of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers in Europe.

Their integration is key to ensuring inclusion and equality for all in Europe. It is also an important area of equality bodies’ work as part of their mission of promoting equality and combating discrimination. Read more..

Equinet Handbook on how to build a case on equal pay

Gender Equality: This Handbook aims to be a practical and useful tool for anyone who works on equal pay cases, guiding you to existing resources, data, partners and arguments that have been successful in the past. The Handbook includes:

  • Checklists on what to ask claimants and respondents and how to gather data
  • Suggestions of external partners to work with when gathering information for your case
  • Information on how to shift the burden of proof
  • Tools to show the importance of transparent pay schemes for your case: gender neutral job evaluation schemes and wage calculators
  • Examples of cases handled by equality bodies in Europe
  • Links to relevant resources, tools, statistics and literature

Read more..

Equinet Evaluation Lab - Final booklet available

Evaluation: The Equinet Evaluation Lab aimed to provide a platform for discussion among expert staff members of equality bodies interested in measuring the impact of their work. The final outcomes of the project are included in this booklet and aim to stimulate discussions on the evaluation work of equality bodies within and outside its membership. Read more..

Equinet Working Paper on Developing Standards for Equality Bodies 

New Language Translations: This Working Paper is based on discussions that took place during the Equinet Cluster on Standards in 2015, as well as contributions and comments provided since then by Equinet members. It seeks to establish positions that equality bodies could promote, negotiate and advance vis-à-vis European and national administrations in the establishment of standards for equality bodies at European level and their implementation at national level.

It is currently available in Czech, English, French and German, with Dutch and Serbian soon to come! Read more..

Equinet Chair participates in ENNHRI General Assembly

Member engagement:  Equinet Chair Evelyn Collins recently participated in the General Assembly of the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions (ENNHRI) and spoke about the need for standards for equality bodies, as well as the discriminatory impact of counter terrorism measures in Europe.

It was a great opportunity to meet with some of our members, which due to their mandate are not only Equality Bodies, but also National Human Rights Institutions. 

During the General Assembly, ENNHRI members discussed their support and solidarity for the Polish equality body and NHRI, the Commissioner for Human Rights. Considering recent developments in Poland which could negatively impact on the Commissioner for Human Rights’ vital role to promote and protect human rights, a statement was released on 28 October 2016, stating ENNHRI’s strong support for the Commissioner for Human Rights in its work to promote and protect human rights in Poland. Equinet, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Europe Regional Office and International Ombudsman Institute all endorsed the statement. Read more..

Upcoming Equinet Conference
Diverse, Inclusive and Equal: Innovating at the Intersections of Gender Equality

7 December 2016
Hosted by: Belgian Institute for the Equality of Women and Men, Brussels
(External registration now closed)

Intersectionality: Tackling intersectional discrimination and ensuring an approach to promoting equality that takes account of multiple identities is a pervasive challenge both for European non-discrimination law, and for equality bodies seeking to protect groups in the most vulnerable positions.

This conference welcomes participants active in the field of equality to discuss the challenges in promoting an intersectional approach to equality and in litigating intersectional discrimination. Read more...

Members News

Commissioner for Fundamental Rights hosts Equinet Seminar

Race and Ethnic Origin: Equinet, together with the Hungarian Office of the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights, organised a one and a half day capacity-building seminar for equality bodies’ staff members about fighting discrimination based on the grounds of race and ethnic origin. The meeting took place in Budapest on 9-10 November 2016. Presentations and photos from the seminar are online now. Read more..

The Commissioner for Fundamental Rights László Székely emphasized that discrimination against the Roma is rooted in the prejudices present in society and form part of a complex set of problems related to welfare, education, employment and housing issues. This discrimination often results in the affected persons becoming victims of hate crimes.

Deputy-Commissioner Elisabeth Sándor-Szalay pointed out that the problems that affect the whole continent can only be tackled by way of a dialogue on European level. The Equinet seminar is an excellent opportunity for the leading European experts of this topic to share their knowledge with the staff members of European equality bodies. Read more..

First Regional Forum of South-East Europe Equality Bodies

Member engagement: The Serbian Commissioner for the Protection of Equality organized “The First Regional Forum of South-east Europe Equality Bodies“ on the occasion of International Tolerance Day (Belgrade, 16 November 2016, 11:00 -13:00).

The aim of the Forum, which brings together equality bodies from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, (FYRO) Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia, aims to establish an effective model of regional cooperation between equality bodies of different countries in this region, geared towards promoting activities aimed at human rights protection and equality. Read more..

Norway needs a holistic strategy against hate speech and hate crime

Hate Crime: On 8  November, the Ombudsman, in cooperation with the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI), held a conference on hate crimes in Norway. “Norway needs a holistic strategy against hate speech and hate crime,” says Equality and Discrimination Ombud Hanne Bjurstrøm. Christian Ahlund, Chair of ECRI, presented the ECRI report's recommendations at the conference. He called for comprehensive measures to strengthen efforts to combat hate crimes in Norway, and emphasized that the government must play a key role in combating racism and intolerance. "Full involvement by the authorities is crucial for success, both in the fight against discrimination and in efforts to combat hate crimes", he said. Read more..

EU News

European Commission's focused actions to combat violence against women

Violence against Women: Věra Jourová, European Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality has taken the initiative to dedicate 2017 to combating violence against women.

Launching the initiative on 25 November, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, some of the European Commission's actions include: 
  • Launching a campaign with the message: Say no! Stop violence against women (#SayNoStopVAW) 
  • Publishing the Eurobarometer on gender-based violence (2016) 
  • Releasing a joint statement of 6 Commissioners, together with a Q&A summarising European Commission activities in this area.

Factsheet in support of the Istanbul Convention to combat violence against women & girls 

Violence against Women: The European Coalition to end violence against women and girls, made up of more than 25 European civil society networks, has launched a factsheet in support of the EU signature and ratification of the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, the Istanbul Convention. Read more..

OSCE-ODHIR publishes 2015 Hate Crime data

New Hate Crime data: On 16 November 2016, the International Day for Tolerance, the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODHIR) published its hate crime data for 2015.

While the general level of reporting to ODIHR is comparable to previous years, limited data on some bias motivations indicate under-reporting and gaps in recording. The data covers 41 OSCE-States, including 34 European states with Equinet membership. Read more..

An analysis of the introduction of socio-economic status as a discrimination ground

Socio-economic status:
The introduction of a socioeconomic status ground into Irish employment equality and equal status legislation would be very welcome considering the wide range of discrimination currently experienced on this ground. This should cover, in particular, the key fields of employment, education, housing and accommodation and health. This discrimination has been deepened and exacerbated by the economic and financial crises and poverty resulting from how this crisis has been managed. Irish equality legislation, with its nine different grounds of discrimination, has an admirable and important aspiration to be comprehensive in its coverage. This aspiration remains to be realised while the ground of socio-economic status is still not included. Read more..
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Equinet is co-funded by the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme of the European Union (2014-2020).