FRA weekly 5-12 Nov

 

 

  1. HIGHLIGHTS
  2. a)Minimum age and social rights: Balancing child protection and participation
  3. WHAT’S COMING UP
  4. a)Opening the World Bank’s Law, Justice and Development Week
  5. PAST ACTIVITIES
  6. a)FRA exchanges views with the Council of Europe
  7. b)The human rights cities movement steps up internationally
  8. c)Fundamental rights features at Biometrics Congress 2018
  9. d)eu-LISA holds its annual conference
  10. e)FRA Opinions discussed at the European Parliament

  1. HIGHLIGHTS

a.   Minimum age and social rights: Balancing child protection and participation

A new set of findings on differences in legal minimum ages covering social rights, education, employment and finance, alternative care, LGBTI and mobility has been released by the Agency. By highlighting the differences, FRA aims to help the EU and its Member States eliminate inconsistencies, protection gaps and seemingly arbitrary restrictions resulting from different age thresholds. The findings on social rights, education and employment are also closely linked to the Agency’s recent child poverty report. (Contact:childrights@fra.europa.eu)

  1. WHAT’S COMING UP

a.   Opening the World Bank’s Law, Justice and Development Week

The World Bank’s Law, Justice and Development Week takes place from 5 to 9 November in Washington DC where the FRA Director will open the event and will be livestreamed. He will speak about the Agency’s experience in contributing data analysis and expertise to help measure the fulfilment of human rights on the ground. The yearly event is the largest event on law, justice and development that brings together the global community engaged in using law and legal tools for development. This year the theme is rights, protection and development. While in Washington, the Director will speak at a public event on FRA’s work, which will be hosted by the EU Delegation to the US together with the Centre for International and Strategic Studies. He will also meet with the leadership of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum to speak about issues of antisemitism and the importance of Holocaust remembrance in raising awareness about the importance of respecting human rights today. (Contact: Andreas Accardo)

  1. PAST ACTIVITIES

a.   FRA exchanges views with the Council of Europe

On 17 October, the FRA Director gave a speech at the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe to mark the 10th anniversary of the agreement on cooperation between the Council of Europe and the Agency. The exchange of views with representatives of Council of Europe Member States highlighted aspects of particular interest in that cooperation. The Director also met with the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe for the first time. In addition, he exchanged views with the European Committee of Social Rights on 18 October, exploring possibilities for further FRA support for the Committee’s work. It was also an opportunity to meet with high-level Council of Europe officials dealing with Human Rights and the Rule of Law, Human Dignity, Equality and Governance, Democratic Participation, Information Society and Action against Crime. (Contact: Maria Amor Martín Estébanez)

b.   The human rights cities movement steps up internationally

The Agency took part in the World Human Rights Cities Forum in Gwangju, South Korea from 18 to 20 October. This year’s forum discussed the various models of human rights cities and how these models are linked to charters, policies, norms and networks. The forum also presented a range of practices on ways to implement human rights locally. Interesting practices from Brazil, Canada, Indonesia, and Nepal among others were shared. The approaches of Vienna and Barcelona were also showcased. FRA spoke at the International session to present the key results of its policy lab on human rights cities, co-organised with the City of Vienna in May 2018. Key outcomes of the FRA Fundamental Rights Forum were also presented. These included the importance of going local, bringing diverse voices to discussions and better rights communicating. The World Forum allowed closer links with the United Nations agenda to be developed. It also explored ways for cities to contribute to UN human rights treaties mechanisms and the implementation of the Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals. (Contact: Geraldine Guille)

c.    Fundamental rights features at Biometrics Congress 2018

The Agency presented its Under watchful eyes – biometrics, EU IT-systems and fundamental rights report at the Biometrics Institute’s Biometrics Congress 2018 on 18 October in London. The meeting paid particular attention to facial recognition technologies, a topic that also features in FRA’s legal opinions on the VIS proposal and identity documents and residence cards. (Contact: Ann-Charlotte Nygård)

d.   eu-LISA holds its annual conference

The EU Agency eu-LISA held its annual conference on 17 October in Tallinn. Entitled ‘EU Borders – Getting Smarter Through Technology’, it brought together 160 participants from EU institutions and agencies, Member States, academia, consulting companies and the IT industry. The conference focused on new trends, technologies and challenges in external border management, both from strategic and operational points of view. Speakers and participants debated how to best use technology to address current and future EU border management related challenges. (Contact: Tamas Molnar)

e.   FRA Opinions discussed at the European Parliament

The Agency presented the main findings of its latest Opinions to the European Parliament. It focused on the main fundamental rights safeguards that could be further strengthened in proposals for strengthening the security of identity cards of EU citizens their families and for a revised Visa Information System. FRA reiterated its suggestion to include a general fundamental rights safeguard clause in the proposals and mainstream fundamental rights in their implementation and evaluation. The presentations were given during technical meetings in October with the staff of the Rapporteur and shadow Rapporteurs of the various Political Groups in the European Parliament. (Contact: Sara Sighinolfi)

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