Equinet promotes equality in Europe through supporting and enabling the work of national equality bodies. It supports equality bodies to be independent and effective as valuable catalysts for more equal societies.

Equinet Newsbook

January 2015

Equinet Highlights

Strategic Plan 2015-2018

Equinet starts 2015 with a new Strategic Plan to lead the work of the European Network in the coming four-year period. The plan outlines our continued work on capacity-building and consolidation of the network and its members, as well as reinforcing our focus on contributing to the European Equality Agenda.

42 members in 32 countries

The Annual General Meeting saw Equinet welcome its 42nd member, the Albanian Commissioner for the Protection from Discrimination, an independent authority created in 2010 to ensure efficient protection from discrimination and any kind of behaviour which incites discrimination.

Combatting violence against women

In December, Equinet and the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) provided a platform for exchange on the possible role for equality bodies in the eradication of violence against women.


European Commission

  • The EC has released new figures showing that the average share of women on the boards of the largest publicly listed companies across the EU has now reached 20.2%.
  • A new study prepared for the European Commission suggests new methods to understand occupational gender segregation in European labour markets.

Court of Justice of the European Union 

  • A negative opinion has been delivered on the draft agreement on the accession of the European Union to the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms and identifies problems with regard to its compatibility with EU law.
  • In its judgement in Cases C-148/13 to C-150/13, the CJEU has clarified the method by which national authorities may assess the credibility of the declared sexual orientation of applicants for asylum.
  • In its judgment in Case C-354/13, the Court decided that obesity can constitute a ‘disability’ within the meaning of the Employment Equality Directive, although EU law does not lay down a general principle of non-discrimination on grounds of obesity as such.

European Court of Human Rights

  • Emel Boyraz v. Turkey (application no. 61960/08): The ECHR held that the dismissal of a security officer because she was a woman was discriminatory, as there had been a violation of Article 14 (prohibition of discrimination) in conjunction with Article 8 (right for respect to private and family life) of the European Convention on Human Rights).
  • Cumhuriyetçi Eğitim Ve Kültür Merkezi Vakfi v. Turkey (application no. 32093/10): The ECHR found that the Alevi community sustained a difference in treatment without any objective or reasonable justification, and that the system for granting exemptions from payment of electricity bills for places of worship under Turkish law entailed discrimination on the ground of religion. 

United Nations



When: 23 March 2015
Where: Residence Palace, Rue de la Loi 155, Brussels, Belgium
What: Focus on future strategic priorities and tools in the field of gender equality
More Information


The European Commission has launched a public consultation to gather insights and contributions in the context of the ongoing review and impact assessment process concerning the Working Time Directive and possible changes to the Directive. The deadline for contributions from citizens, organisations and public authorities through the online questionnaire (EUSurvey) is 15 March 2015.


Belgian Equinet member, the Interfederal Centre for Equal Opportunities, has produced a survey of the case-law which clarifies the content of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and which further shapes the articles of the Convention


The European Network Against Racism has published Invisible Visible Minority - Confronting Afrophobia and Advancing Equality for People of African Descent and Black Europeans in Europe in order to raise awareness about the racism and discrimination experiences commonly face by members of Europe’s Black population.


The Beijing+20 report of the European Women’s Lobby calls for urgent comprehensive EU action to realise gender equality. They have thus designated 2015 a Year of Action to work on the 12 areas of the Beijing Platform for Action along the 12 months of the year. 
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