Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 31 n° 301

Posts Tagged ‘citizens’

Xylem Named to The JUST 100 America’s Best Corporate Citizens List

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 13 dicembre 2018

Global water technology company, Xylem (NYSE:XYL), has been included on Forbes 2018 “JUST 100” list, a ranking of 100 companies that have made a significant economic and social impact through their core business strategy. Xylem was recognized in the category of Company Leadership and Shareholders, where Xylem ranked second overall and first in its industry.
Patrick Decker, President and CEO of Xylem, said, “We are honored to be recognized by Forbes and JUST Capital for what all of our colleagues do every day to make a difference. This reflects Xylem’s commitment to creating economic and social value through our mission to solve water – by making water safer, affordable and more accessible for people around the world. This guiding principle is core to our business, and will also have a lasting impact on communities. We will continue to share our collective knowledge, expertise and passion to help build a more water-secure world.”Now in its third year, the Forbes “JUST 100” list measures and ranks companies on issues that are deemed most important to the American public and linked to important stakeholder groups – Workers, Customers, Products, Environment, Communities, Jobs, and Company Leadership & Shareholders.Notable Xylem initiatives recognized by Forbes include the Company’s use of local products and resources (+55.8 difference from industry average), leadership acts and communicates with integrity (+50.21 difference from industry average) and use of natural resources efficiently and reduction of waste (+44.89 difference from industry average).Over the past year, Xylem has received a number of recognitions for its leadership in sustainability. Fortune included Xylem in their Companies Changing the World list and Barron’s ranked Xylem in the top 10 on its inaugural list of the 100 Most Sustainable Companies headquartered in the United States. Xylem also received an Engage for Good Gold Halo Award in 2017 for the Company’s Watermark employee volunteerism efforts.

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Citizens Bank and Military Warriors Support Foundation Present Home to Purple Heart Recipient

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 5 novembre 2018

As part of its ongoing commitment to give back to the communities it serves, Citizens Bank has again partnered with the Military Warriors Support Foundation (MWSF) to donate a newly renovated, mortgage-free house to a deserving veteran and his family.The Aldan, Pennsylvania home – renovated by Citizens Bank colleagues and donated by the bank – was presented today to Private First Class Michael Lowe, who honorably served his country as a combat engineer in Iraq and Korea.Michael was inspired to join the Army in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks on New York City on September 11, 2001. He was born in Georgetown, Guyana and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He entered the Army in March 2003 and served until 2006 as a Private First Class Combat Engineer serving in Korea and Iraq. Before retiring from the Army for medical reasons, Michael received several awards and commendations for his service including the Purple Heart.
At a ceremony, Citizens colleagues lined the street to welcome Michael and his family to their new home. Representatives from Citizens Bank and Military Warriors Support Foundation presented the keys to Michael and led him on a tour of his new home.More than 100 Citizens Bank colleagues have donated their time volunteering on various projects to improve the house. Citizens Bank colleagues donated their time and talents, as well as items for the home (television, snow blower, gas grill, gardening tools, small kitchen appliances and silverware, living room, family room, and bedroom furniture) and gift cards for various stores in the area.Additionally, GIANT Food Stores has donated groceries, personal care and home supplies to fill the family’s kitchen and cupboards. The company is also providing the family with free groceries for the year, valued at $2,500 and, as the official grocer of the Philadelphia Phillies will also host Michael and his family at a 2019 Phillies game in Citizens Bank Park.Since 2010, Military Warriors Support Foundation has awarded over 800 mortgage-free homes through their Homes4WoundedHeroes program, and has assisted combat wounded veterans and their families in paying off over $20 million in debt through mentorship.

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Facebook-Cambridge Analytica: MEPs demand action to protect citizens’ privacy

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 29 ottobre 2018

As follow-up action to the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal, MEPs call for a full audit on Facebook and new measures against election meddling.In a resolution adopted, MEPs urge Facebook to allow EU bodies to carry out a full audit to assess data protection and security of users’ personal data, following the scandal in which the data of 87 million Facebook users was improperly obtained, and misused.
MEPs say that Facebook did not only breach the trust of EU citizens, “but indeed EU law”. They recommend that Facebook make changes to its platform to comply with EU data protection law.
MEPs note that the data obtained by Cambridge Analytica may have been used for political purposes, by both sides in the UK referendum on membership of the EU and to target voters during the 2016 American presidential election.They highlight the urgency of countering any attempt to manipulate EU elections and to adapt electoral laws to reflect the new digital reality.To prevent electoral meddling via social media, MEPs propose: applying conventional “off-line” electoral safeguards online: rules on spending transparency and limits, respect for silence periods and equal treatment of candidates;
making it easy to recognise online political paid advertisements and the organisation behind them;
banning profiling for electoral purposes, including use of online behaviour that may reveal political preferences;
that social media platforms should label content shared by bots, speed up the process of removing fake accounts and work with independent fact-checkers and academia to tackle disinformation;
investigations should be carried out by member states with the support of Eurojust, into alleged misuse of the online political space by foreign forces.
The resolution summarises the conclusions reached following last May’s meeting between leading MEPs and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and the three subsequent hearings. It also references the data breach suffered by Facebook on 28 September.Civil Liberties Chair Claude Moraes (S&D, UK) said: “This is a global issue, which has already affected our referenda and our elections. This resolution sets out the measures that are needed, including an independent audit of Facebook, an update to our competition rules, and additional measures to protect our elections. Action must be taken now, not just to restore trust in online platforms, but to protect citizens’ privacy and restore trust and confidence in our democratic systems.”

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UNHCR expresses its serious concern about the repatriation of Myanmar citizens from India

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 6 ottobre 2018

The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) expresses serious concern over the security of seven citizens of Myanmar following their repatriation from India this Thursday. According to the information received from the UNHCR, prior to the execution of the repatriation the seven were transferred to the State of Manipur, on the border with Myanmar, from the central prison of Silchar, in the State of Assam, where they had been detained since 2012. Became aware of the detention and provisions relating to repatriation, and on the basis of reliable reports according to which the seven men belong to the Rohingya minority, UNHCR asked the Indian authorities to grant access to the group in order to assess their needs for international protection. UNHCR regrets that it did not respond to this request and therefore could not guarantee access to a lawyer for state legal services. UNHCR continues to seek clarification from the authorities on the circumstances in which these persons were repatriated Myanmar. The United Nations Refugee Agency is concerned about the lack of access to legal advice and asylum procedures for the assessment of their application for international protection in India. Thousands of Rohingya people have fled Myanmar in recent decades. In the most recent crisis, since August 25, 2017, more than 720,000 Rohingya refugees have been accommodated in Bangladesh. The current conditions in the state of Rakhine in Myanmar do not allow a safe, dignified and sustainable return to the Rohingya stateless refugees.
Approximately 18,000 Rohingya refugees and asylum seekers registered with UNHCR in India are located in different parts of the country. UNHCR issues an identity card to registered refugees and a document to asylum seekers, thus helping to prevent arbitrary arrest, detention and deportation. UNHCR collaborates with state legal services authorities and a network of partners to provide legal assistance to those detained in India who fall under the Agency’s mandate.

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PVH Corp. Named No. 1 Apparel Company on CR Magazine’s 100 Best Corporate Citizens List

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 9 maggio 2018

PVH Corp. [NYSE:PVH], parent company of iconic internationally and nationally known brands including TOMMY HILFIGER, CALVIN KLEIN, Van Heusen, ARROW and IZOD, today announced it was ranked No. 1 among apparel companies and No. 48 overall on CR (Corporate Responsibility) Magazine’s 2018 100 Best Corporate Citizens list. The ranking recognizes the standout environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) performance of public companies across the United States.“We are proud to receive this honor and be recognized as a leader in our industry,” said Emanuel (Manny) Chirico, Chairman and CEO, PVH Corp. “As one of the world’s largest apparel companies, we recognize our responsibility to address our social and environmental impacts and contribute to a fair healthy future for all. Further, we acknowledge our great opportunity to make positive impacts – from source to store – by empowering the people in our value chain, preserving the environment and supporting our communities.” The 100 Best Corporate Citizens List documents 260 ESG data points of disclosure and performance measures – harvested from publicly available information in seven categories: environment, climate change, employee relations, human rights, governance, finance, and philanthropy and community support. The list ranks the companies in the Russell 1000 Index.“CR Magazine is proud to present the only ESG ranking list that doesn’t rely on self-reporting,” said Dave Armon, publisher of CR Magazine. “Each year, the 100 Best Corporate Citizens ranking measures the success of the Brands Taking Stands movement by celebrating the most successful, most transparent companies that report on their responsible practices. We congratulate those honored on this year’s list for their commitment to corporate responsibility.” PVH’s Corporate Responsibility program is structured with ten commitments across three key focus areas: empowering people; preserving the environment; and supporting communities. The commitments support the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, covering issues such as building safety, chemical management, greenhouse gases, inclusion and diversity, and supporting the needs of women and children. Visit to learn more about PVH’s commitment to Corporate Responsibility.

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Czech media freedom: Let citizens decide fate of media-abusing politicians

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 3 giugno 2017

czech-mapMedia freedom must be upheld across the EU, but the Czech case is more a blunder of one politician than a systemic issue, many MEPs said in a debate on Thursday.
The plenary debate was held in reaction to a leaked audio recording, allegedly catching the leader of the Czech coalition ANO party, the former Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Andrej Babiš, instructing a journalist employed by his media group on how to attack his political rivals. Many MEPs condemned the alleged actions of Mr Babiš, but stressed that this seems to be the failure of a single politician, rather than a sign of the government’s systemic abuse of media. Some said the Parliament should not be discussing the issue at all, arguing that the Czech government has dealt with the situation properly. Others noted that the problem reaches further than the Czech Republic and called for EU measures that would guarantee media pluralism in Europe. Click on individual names to watch the full statements: Cecilia Malmström, the EU Commissioner for Trade, noted in her introductory speech that the Commission’s competences in the field of media freedom and pluralism are limited. “The Commission can intervene in this field exclusively when there is EU legislation at stake and it appears not to be the case in this situation.” She stressed that the EU’s executive body “is aware of the challenges of media freedom and pluralism in various member states” and is “closely monitoring the situation all over Europe.” “No member state in the EU is immune to risks when it comes to media pluralism,” Commissioner Malmström stressed. The transparency of media ownership is an indicator of media freedom, where “the Czech Republic’s perceived risk is slightly higher than the average,” she added.
Luděk Niedermayer (EPP, CZ) stressed that neither Czech citizens, nor the Czech government, has done anything wrong. It is the fault of a few individuals, he insisted. Member states need to properly enforce their legislation and support independent journalism, he said, warning there are external threats too to face, such as Russian propaganda. He concluded by thanking all journalists who withstand political pressure and deliver quality journalism.
Pavel Poc (S&D, CZ) echoed the previous speaker, by saying there is no systematic manipulation of media by the Czech government, just one politician who abused the media and was then sacked from the government. Contempt for democratic institutions is a real threat to media pluralism, he said, warning of the risk of future political abuse of Czech media from politicians enjoying enormous political, economic and media power.
Jan Zahradil (ECR, CZ) considered the debate unnecessary and that the Parliament should not be dealing with this issue. We have media pluralism in the Czech Republic, there is no media monopoly, no threat to media freedom, just one oligarch who has used his media, and the Czech Republic had already adopted a law to deal with such conflicts of interests, he assured the plenary. He also said that the debate was a result of a fight between the ALDE, which criticised Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, and EPP, which now wants to counter-attack.
Pavel Telička (ALDE, CZ) was also not quite sure why MEPs were discussing the issue. The EP is supposed to deal with systematic problems, he said, and even though the behaviour of Andrej Babiš was unacceptable, this was just a single case. Instead of discussing a failure of one Czech politician, the Parliament should focus on working on the EU’s future, he stressed. He also pointed out that the Wold Press Freedom Index puts the Czech Republic higher than other EU member states, such as France or UK.
Kateřina Konečná (GUE/NGL, CZ) also stressed that the criticism should not be directed against Czech citizens or the country per se. There is only one guilty party and that is Andrej Babis, who bought media companies to bolster his political power, she said, noting that this is not the first time EU politicians are trying to influence media in their respective member states. She also criticised ALDE leader Guy Verhofstadt, EU Commissioner Věra Jourová, and MEP Telička for knowing all about Mr Babiš, but looking the other way. The fate of Mr Babiš is now in the hands of Czech citizens, she concluded.
Judith Sargentini (Greens/EFA, NL) said this is not the first time that an EU member state is in such a situation, pointing to the situation in Italy in 2009. Plurality of media is vital for democracy and therefore we need EU legislation that will guarantee media pluralism in Europe and ensure that media do not end up in the hands of a few individuals, she stressed.
Rolandas Paksas (EFDD, LT) said this debate was more of a provocation than anything else. We are interfering in the domestic politics of a sovereign state, he warned. While Mr Babiš is one of the most popular Czech politicians, popularity of PM Sobotka is plummeting and some people do not like it here, he said. He also pointed to other issues the Parliament could discuss, such as the way that Sweden or Germany are dealing with immigrants.

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MEPs and Council negotiators agree to waive EU visa requirement for Ukrainians

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 1 marzo 2017

ucrainaUkrainian citizens will be able to travel to the EU visa free under an informal deal struck by Parliament and Council negotiators on Tuesday. Once the change enters into force, and provided they have biometric passports, they will be able to enter the EU for up to 90 days in any 180-day-period for business, tourist or family purposes.
The deal will now have to be endorsed by the Civil Liberties Committee and Parliament as a whole, before being formally approved by the Council of Ministers.
Parliament´s rapporteur, Mariya Gabriel (EPP, BG) said “adopting the visa waiver for Ukrainian citizens is an important step forward towards reforming Ukrainian society by bringing people together, building bridges across borders. We at the European Parliament are convinced that Ukrainian citizens now deserve the right to travel freely to the EU. The time has come for the European Council to deliver results.”
Before granting this visa waiver, EU member states revised the visa waiver suspension mechanism to allow visas to be reintroduced more easily in exceptional cases. This revision was approved on Monday by the Council. The legislation will be signed by Parliament’s President Antonio Tajani and representatives of the Maltese Presidency of the Council on Wednesday 1 March and enter into force 20 days after it is published in the EU Official Journal.
The EU and Kiev began visa liberalisation negotiations in 2008. At the end of 2015, the European Commission concluded that Ukraine had made the necessary progress and had met all the benchmarks, despite the exceptional internal and external challenges it faced in recent years, and presented a proposal to grant its citizens visa-free access to the EU from April 2016.
The visa waiver will apply to all EU member states except Ireland and the United Kingdom. It does not confer a right to work in the EU.

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Civil Liberties MEPs back deal with Council extending right to legal aid

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 9 luglio 2016

european parliamentThe Civil Liberties Committee endorsed on Thursday the deal struck with the Council extending the right to legal aid for citizens suspected or accused of a crime, or named in a European Arrest Warrant. The draft text recognises the right both to provisional and ordinary legal aid, ensuring that persons who cannot afford a lawyer get part or all the costs of their defence and court proceedings covered by the state.Legal aid should be provided at all stages of the criminal process, as Parliament defended. The original Commission´s proposal only envisaged the right to “provisional” legal aid for suspects or accused persons in criminal proceedings who are “deprived of liberty”, only until there is a final decision on their eligibility for legal aid. “Ordinary” legal aid refers to all defence costs, including the cost of a lawyer and court fees, during the whole criminal justice process.
The legislation foresees a “means test” to assess whether a person has the economic resources to pay for legal aid. It also includes a “merits test”, designed to determine whether offering legal aid would be in the interest of justice. The latter should assess, for example, the complexity of the case or the seriousness of the offense.Persons named in European Arrest Warrants would also be covered, in both the executing and the issuing member state.The committee backed the agreement with the Council with 44 votes in favour and 1 against. The UK and Ireland decided not to take part in this legislation, while Denmark has an “opt out” by default for matters of Justice and Home Affairs.
The draft directive now needs to be adopted by Parliament as a whole. The vote it is scheduled to take place in October. Following formal adoption by the Council and publication in the Official Journal, member states will have 30 months to transpose it to their national legislation.

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Safe Harbour ruling: The Commission must act now to ensure clarity and safety for citizens and businesses

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 8 ottobre 2015

european commissionThe European Commission has failed to ensure a solid data protection framework for the transfer of EU citizens’ data to US companies. As a result citizens and businesses alike are left with an unclear legislative patchwork after today’s ruling of the European Court of Justice declaring the Commission adequacy decision invalid, says Civil Liberties Committee Chair Claude Moraes (S&D, UK), calling for immediate action from the Commission to provide clarity and proper data protection standards for data transfers to the US.Statement from Civil Liberties Committee Chair, Claude Moraes (S&D, UK), after the European Commission’s initial response to the Safe Harbour ruling:
“The Commission’s initial response to the European Court of Justice decision to invalidate the Safe Harbour agreement is disappointing as it lacks any real concrete update on what it intends to do regarding replacing the Safe Harbour framework.Despite the fact that the Commission has been in negotiations with the US on reform of the Safe Harbour for nearly two years, we have still not received any update on the negotiations or the impact that this decision will have on the discussions. Given that the European Court of Justice has invalided the Safe Harbour framework immediately, it is also regrettable that the Commission has not specified a timeframe for the conclusion of these discussions.It is unfortunate that the Commission did not follow up on the European Parliament’s repeated calls to suspend the Safe Harbour framework as this would have allowed it to implement transitional measures over a period of time. Instead, as the European Court of Justice ruling takes effect immediately, the issue has become urgent resulting in the need for the Commission to provide immediate clarity to companies who are uncertain as to how they can continue to transfer EU citizens’ data to the US as well as to provide guidelines to the national data protection authorities.Of course, the flow of EU citizens’ data will continue and there are other alternatives that business can use, including standard contractual clauses or binding corporate rules. This shows that the judgement will not result in a dramatic stop to data flows across the Atlantic with serious economic impact – instead it shows that it is possible to continue with data transfers and at the same time implement a framework that will protect EU citizens’ data when being transferred to the US and ensure they have equivalent safeguards to those that exist in the EU.Both the message from the European Parliament and from the European Court of Justice have been clear: the Safe Harbour framework does not protect European citizens private data when being transferred to the US as the EU Charter and EU law require. Now the responsibility to remedy this solution is with the Commission. It must act without delay to fill this void”.

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Dominican Republic President hails major Caribbean human rights advancement

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 3 luglio 2015

daniloSanto Domingo President Danilo Medina today announced the overwhelming success of a series of measures implemented by his government to protect hundreds of thousands of Dominican citizens and irregular migrants from the threat of statelessness.The measures, which included a Naturalisation Plan and a National Regularisation Plan, were implemented by Medina’s government in reaction to a controversial 2013 ruling by the Dominican Constitutional Tribunal that risked making stateless the descendants of undocumented migrants, born in the Dominican Republic.The President hailed the success of the programme, saying: “The recently completed registrations are the most important ever human rights advancement in the Caribbean. Additionally, this mass registration of citizens and immigrants now offers my government a platform to better protect our territorial integrity, combat human trafficking and implement our sovereign right to just and effective migration policy.” In total over 350,000 residents registered with the state under three separate categories over the 18 months to 17 June 2015.55,000 residents born in the Dominican republic of two foreign parents and carrying documents of citizenship issued by the Dominican state before the court ruling were recognised by the Central Board of Elections and the Civil Registry as citizens; 8,755 residents born in the Dominican Republic of two foreign parents under an irregular migrant condition and without foreign papers were registered in the book of foreigners, and may access naturalisation following a period of two years;
288,486 individuals requested the regularisation of their migratory status under the National Regularisation Plan. Pending a review of each applicant’s status to be completed by the end of August, residential status will be granted to successful applicants. avaniterson@cambre-associates.comThe President went on to declare that “if anybody presents a single case of properly documented statelessness to our Government, have no doubt that it will be resolved”. He also stressed that no-one born in the Dominican Republic would be deported.

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United Nations leaves Israel alone in the face of an existential threat, says WJC

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 15 luglio 2014

GazastripNEW YORK – The World Jewish Congress on Sunday criticized the United Nations Security Council and senior UN officials for failing to recognize Israel’s right to self-defense under the UN Charter against armed attacks against its territory and population. “It is once again troubling and shameful to see how the UN and many other governments are failing to grasp the fact that Israel is responding to an armed aggression launched against its territory by Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip,” said WJC President Ronald S. Lauder in response to Saturday’s Security Council statement and comments by UN Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay which questioned the legality of Israel’s action in the Gaza Strip and suggested that Israel was deliberately killing civilians in Gaza.Lauder welcomed the Canadian government’s rejection of Pillay’s comments, which Foreign Minister John Baird had said was an “uncalled-for criticism of Israel”. The WJC president declared: “Canada has once again proven to be a real friend and one of the Jewish state’s closest allies. To put Hamas – a recognized terror organization – and the State of Israel on the same level and then to blame Israel for causing the death of civilians that Hamas deliberately uses as human shields is a way of saying that Hamas’ actions are justified.“Contrary to what Mrs. Pillay claims, the Israel military is taken extraordinary steps to prevent civilian casualties whereas Hamas is cynically seeking as many civilian casualties as possible. It is time for the UN and its leading officials to show some moral backbone, to uphold the principles enshrined in the UN Charter, and to hold Israel to the same standards than any other country battling this sort of existential threat,” he added.A few days ago, Lauder wrote a letter to UN ambassadors, EU foreign ministers, and others, telling them: “If it were your cities under attack, we know you would agree that a sovereign government has a duty to defend its citizens.”The WJC president also criticized the UN Security Council statement on the conflict, saying: “Once again, the council failed to name the cause of this conflict, or to condemn Hamas’ actions. The UN, instead of defending the values on which the organization was founded seven decades ago, continues to blame Israel for everything and is silent on terror groups such as Hamas.”

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Ecumenical European meeting on “Crossing borders – at what price?”

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 29 giugno 2014

migrantsThe 19th General Assembly of the Churches’ Commission for Migrants in Europe (CCME) started on 26 June at the Sigtuna Foundation. The Church of Sweden and the Christian Council of Sweden, the two Swedish member organisations in CCME, are hosting the event in Sigtuna. One of the issues discussed on the opening day is how the churches can influence European countries to take greater responsibility for the refugee crises in our vicinity. Some 80 delegates from CCME’s member organisations gathered from all over Europe, as well as a few representatives of partner organisations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The opening plenary “Crossing borders – at what price?” about the EU’s external borders included experts from civil society from various EU Member States. A hundred years after national borders were installed it is more difficult than ever to enter Europe, especially for those seeking to escape persecution and war. Swedish-Eritrean journalist Meron Estefanos and Swedish journalist and author David Qviström were two of the speakers. “Migration is of course not a new phenomenon; it has existed throughout the history of humankind,” said Doris Peschke, General Secretary of CCME. “In recent history however, crossing borders from outside the European Union has become rather difficult and risky, while inside the EU citizens and long-term residents have the right to move to another EU country. Thus we see both, progress and setbacks with regard to migration in Europe”. The speakers at the General Assembly included Victoria Kamondji, moderator of CCME; Åke Bonnier, Bishop of Skara Diocese; Karin Wiborn, General Secretary of the Christian Council of Sweden; Alf Linderman, Director of Sigtunastiftelsen; Reverend Håkan Sandvik; Seta Hadeshian, Diakonia and Social Justice Unit Director at the Middle East Council of Churches (MECC) and Tabitha Kentaro Sabiiti, Policy and Advocacy Officer: Liaison Office to the African Union, the All Africa Conference of Churches (AACC). During worship on the theme “Beyond borders” held at the Maria Church participants prayed especially for those who lost their lives on their way to seek safety. Reverend Karin Wiborn said in her sermon; “We use a ship to illustrate the ecumenical work with a boat, the Greek word oikumene means the household or all humanity. Being a part of humanity in an ecumenical way, it could have been me, it is me, suffering. It is me crossing the boarders in Europe. It is me needing.”
The General Assembly will take place at Sigtunastiftelsen (the Sigtuna Foundation) on 26–28 June. Organisational issues such as how closer cooperation with the Conference of European Churches (CEC) could be formed will also be discussed during the days in Sigtuna.
CCME was founded in 1964 by the World Council of Churches (WCC) and today cooperates closely with the Conference of European Churches (CEC). CCME has five areas of work on its agenda: Europe’s responsibility for the protection of refugees, human dignity for migrant workers, work to prevent human trafficking, uniting in diversity and strong ecumenism between domestic and migrant-led churches, and the churches’ work on integration and inclusion.

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Data protection: “Today’s ruling is good news for 500 million Europeans”

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 9 aprile 2014

court justiceReacting to today’s decision by the EU’s Court of Justice to invalidate the 2006 data retention directive, the Chair of the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee, Juan Fernando López Aguilar (S&D, ES) said: “Today’s ruling by the Court of Justice is good news for 500 million European citizens. It reminds us that Europe is not only about the Euro and the single market, but it is mainly about rights. The Court of Justice, the highest guardian of Community law, has ruled that privacy and confidentiality of communications must prevail”, he said.”Data protection is a fundamental right secured like never before after the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty and the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and threatened by the digital revolution and intrusive practices by big firms, security agencies and mass surveillance, as revealed by the NSA scandal in the USA”, he added.”It is now more urgent than ever that the Council unlock the data protection regulation that the Civil Liberties Committee and the European Parliament approved in this legislative term. The data protection regulation is a European law, directly binding on EU countries, and citizens may directly invoke it before any EU court. If it is not already in force it is not because Parliament has not done its job, but because the Council has not reached a common position yet. We urge the Council to do so in this term. There is still time under the Greek Presidency”, he concluded.

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Supporting Sustainable Economic Growth in Moldova

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 30 marzo 2014

new yorkNew York,  Helping Moldova enhance its structural reform agenda and spur growth, by supporting improvements in the business climate, promoting financial sector stability and development, and improving the equity and efficiency of public expenditures are the core objectives of the First Development Policy Operation (DPO), in the amount of US$30 million, approved today by the World Bank Group Board of Executive Directors. The US$30 million supports the Government of Moldova’s National Development Strategy “Moldova 2020” and is a key component of the Moldova Country Partnership Strategy for 2014-2017. It is first in a programmatic series of two operations and builds on the most recent competitiveness-oriented Development Policy Operation approved in November 2012. ”We are pleased to support the Government of Moldova’s efforts to achieve sustainable and inclusive economic growth by shifting to a growth model based on investments, increased competitiveness, innovation and exports”, said Abdoulaye Seck, World Bank Country Manager for Moldova. „Our support is fully aligned with the country’s national development priorities and aims to address key reforms that can contribute to spurring private-sector led growth, whilst making public investments work better and more equitably to reduce poverty and boost shared prosperity for all Moldovan citizens”. The new operation supports a number of important structural reforms through: i) strengthening the regulatory framework to improve predictability of the business environment, facilitate competition and reduce regulatory compliance costs; ii) strengthening financial sector stability, promoting transparency of shareholding, and easing conditions for access to finance; iii) improving the public investment management framework, making investment subsidies in agriculture more efficient and equitable, and improving coverage of well-targeted social assistance programs. “While the first operation marks an important benchmark, we are looking forward to continue our cooperation in advancing structural reforms as part of the second DPO”, said Ruslan Piontkivsky, Task Team Leader of the DPO series. “It is crucial not to lose momentum and to successfully complete all of the initiated reforms.” Since Moldova joined the World Bank in 1992, over US$1 billion has been allocated to 49 operations in the country. Currently, the World Bank portfolio includes 7 active projects with total commitments of US$162.2 million. Areas of support include regulatory reform and business development, education, social assistance, e-governance, healthcare, agriculture, and other. The International Finance Corporation has provided total investments in the amount of US$233 million in 24 projects in various sectors, and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency has provided guarantees totaling US$95 million. Both institutions are members of the World Bank Group.

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Immigrant Citizens Survey

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 13 maggio 2012

La Fondation Roi Baudoin (Belgium) ha condotto una indagine sui cittadini immigrati: rilevazione dei bisogni, valutazione delle politiche, miglioramento delle capacità. Per raccogliere le percezioni dell’opinione pubblica e dei migranti e sviluppare una più completa comprensione dei processi di integrazione
Il progetto ha lo scopo di rendere la voce dei cittadini di paesi terzi legalmente residenti ampia e sufficientemente rappresentativa a livello Europeo affinché i loro bisogni, contributi, aspirazioni, e opinioni possano aiutare gli attori della politica a migliorare le capacità di integrazione. L’”Indagine Sui Cittadini Immigrati” chiede agli immigrati per prima cosa di valutare i loro bisogni e il loro contributo nella vita di tutti i giorni e poi di valutare come questi bisogni sono o potrebbero essere soddisfatti da interventi pubblici. La popolazione oggetto di questa indagine include adulti (dai 15 anni) cittadini di paesi terzi che risiedono legalmente nel paese da almeno un anno. Lo schema dell’indagine valuta bisogni e rilevanza politica, efficienza, ed efficacia in molte aree di integrazione: il mercato del lavoro e il riconoscimento delle competenze e dei titoli di studio; la vita famigliare; la sicurezza della residenza; l’accesso ai servizi generali (es. assistenza sanitaria, casa); istruzione; partecipazione civica; accesso alla cittadinanza; e l’antidiscriminazione. Tali temi sono delineati in modo da essere comparabili con i sondaggi generali già esistenti a livello europeo per permettere confronti tra i cittadini dei paesi terzi e il resto della popolazione.
L’indagine è stata condotta in 7 Paesi europei. In Italia la rilevazione si è svolta nelle città di Milano e Napoli, per un totale di 800 interviste, nel periodo ottobre-dicembre 2011

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Nasce Celebritaly

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 2 settembre 2011

COLUMBUS DAY PARADE  2010   /   Italian-Americ...

Image by asterix611 via Flickr

Promuovere l’Italia e l’italianità negli Stati Uniti al di là di stereotipi e luoghi comuni. Coinvolgere le più importanti realtà italiane nelle manifestazioni culturali e celebrative che ogni anno, in occasione dell’anniversario della scoperta dell’America, vengono organizzate a New York dalla comunità italo americana. Nasce con questi scopi il Comitato Celebritaly (, partner ufficiale per l’Italia della Columbus Citizens Foundation, la Fondazione che si dedica a diffondere la cultura italiana negli Stati Uniti, mantenendo vive lingua e tradizioni degli italiani d’America, finanziando ricerca e borse di studio per gli studenti italo-americani più meritevoli e organizzando nel mese di ottobre le “Columbus Celebrations” che culminano con la celebre parata sulla Quinta Strada.
Promotori di Celebritaly sono Lorenzo Candelpergher (presidente), Alberto Cecchini (vicepresidente), Berardo Berardi (segretario), Benedetta Pasero, Roberto Race e Carla Rodomonte.
Celebritaly nasce come iniziativa di supporto promozionale ed operativo alla Columbus Citizens Foundation, con lo scopo di promuovere e organizzare iniziative culturali, manifestazioni ed eventi, di raccogliere sponsorizzazioni e patrocini, e di portare ai figli e ai nipoti degli antichi migranti un po’ di quell’Italia a cui loro continuano a sentire di appartenere. Gli italo americati, grati delle opportunità che hanno avuto crescendo americani, si sentono più che mai orgogliosi di essere italiani e fanno oggi del “made in Italy” il loro stile di vita: dalle scuole alle vacanze, dagli spettacoli alla musica, dal cibo alla moda e alle automobili.

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Civil Liberties Committee pushes for more transparency

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 19 giugno 2011

The Civil Liberties Committee urged today the Commission to revise the rules on public access to documents, highlighting several problems in the implementation of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001. The revised regulation should clarify some of its provisions, precisely define and narrow its exceptions and be simple and accessible for citizens, in order to make them able to effectively use their rights, MEPs insist. The report prepared by Heidi Hautala (Greens/EFA, FI), adopted with 47 votes in favour and 2 against, gives an overview of how the public have had access to EU documents during 2009-2010. It highlights problems in the implementation of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001 and the existing case-law. According to the report, the current regulation on public access to documents contains provisions that are vague and lack precision. The existing exceptions (such as the “space to think”) are widely used while being ambiguous. The committee stresses, for instance, that the documents related to international agreements should not be automatically treated as non-public. The practice of the institutions also shows need for improvement. The Council’s legislative work is criticised for the lack of transparency, while the Commission is requested to open up the work of its expert groups and committees. Furthermore, the documents of the preparation phase of the legislation of the three institutions (trialogues) should be public, MEPs say.
Parliament should be at the forefront of the proactive approach on publicity, transparency, openness and access to documents, stresses the report. Transparency has to apply to the work of Parliament’s official bodies (such as the Conference of Presidents, the Bureau and the Quaestors), says the Civil Liberties Committee. The question of MEPs’ allowances should also be dealt in a transparent way, fully respecting personal data protection rules, it adds. Since the entry into force of Regulation (EC) No 1049/2001 regarding public access to European Parliament, Council and Commission documents the European Parliament has been keen in assessing periodically how the principle of transparency is implemented by the EU institutions. The Lisbon Treaty introduced a new constitutional framework of EU institutional transparency. With the new Treaty, the obligation to grant access to documents does not only bind the Parliament, Council and Commission but also new actors, such as the European Council, the ECJ, the ECB, the EIB, and a growing number of EU agencies and bodies.

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Towards Recovery and Partnership with Citizens

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 12 novembre 2010

Venezia 15 Novembre il Governo Italiano ospiterà all’Isola di San Giorgio Maggiore, presso la Fondazione Cini, la riunione  a livello ministeriale del Comitato Public Governance dell’Ocse dal titolo: “Towards Recovery and Partnership with Citizens: the Call for Innovative and Open Government”. All’incontro, presieduto dal Ministro per la Pubblica Amministrazione e l’Innovazione Renato Brunetta, parteciperanno circa 50 delegazioni dei paesi membri e dei paesi  osservatori presso l’OCSE. Le delegazioni saranno guidate dai Ministri e Vice Ministri responsabili per la Pubblica Amministrazione, tra i quali Irma Pavlinic Krebs per la Slovenia (Ministro per la Pubblica Amministrazione), Terry Moran per l’Australia (Segretario Generale del Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet), Stockwell Day per il Canada (Presidente del Treasury Board), Francis Maude per il Regno Unito (Ministro del Cabinet Office, Paymaster General) ed Elvira Nabiullina per la Federazione Russa (Ministro per lo Sviluppo Economico).
La  riunione prevede due sessioni plenarie, aperte alla stampa, su temi di portata più ampia. La sessione plenaria del mattino sarà destinata al tema della  ricerca di un nuovo equilibrio tra Stato e Mercato (“Governments and Markets: Towards a New Balance”). La sessione plenaria del pomeriggio, nella quale interverrà come key-note speaker il Prof. Mario Monti, Presidente della Università Bocconi di Milano, sarà invece dedicata alle strategie per  creare un’amministrazione in grado di agire d’anticipo  e coinvolgere gli stakeholders (“Delivering on the Challenges to build anticipatory and open governments”) Inoltre, sono previste tre sessioni parallele  nel corso delle quali i ministri si confronteranno sulle sfide e le strategie per:
-migliorare i servizi pubblici anche quando è necessario  ridurre il deficit di bilancio (“Delivering Better Public Services under fiscal pressures”); -rendere l’amministrazione pubblica  più efficace ed orientata ai risultati (“Towards a more effective and performance-oriented public service”);
-rendere l’amministrazione pubblica più aperta alla partecipazione e più trasparente (“Promoting open and transparent government” ).
L’incontro si concluderà con  una dichiarazione finale dei Ministri sulle strategie condivise  e sugli indirizzi che il Comitato Public Governance dell’OCSE dovrà seguire per assistere i Paesi nel  perseguire le strategie individuate.
Alle ore 13,00 il Ministro Renato Brunetta, terrà una conferenza stampa congiunta con i  vice presidenti della Ministeriale,  Stockwell Day, Terry Moran  e Irma Pavlinic Krebs e con il Segretario Generale dell’OCSE, Angel Gurria.

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European Citizens’ Initiative

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 1 luglio 2010

The Citizens’ Initiative has its legal basis in the Article 11 of the Treaty of Lisbon, where it is stated that “Not less than one million citizens who are nationals of a significant number of Member States may take the initiative of inviting the European Commission, within the framework of its powers, to submit any appropriate proposal on matters where citizens consider that a legal act of the Union is required for the purpose of implementing the Treaties”.  Considering that citizens’ participation can only be achieved by directly addressing its end users, the citizens, we would like to ask your opinion about the Commission’s requirement to ask the signatories of a citizens’ initiative for personal identification data.  For this purpose, we have prepared a 3 question survey whose aim is to assess the citizens’ position on the regulation.

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Terrorism blacklists

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 22 marzo 2010

After repeated calls for parliamentary scrutiny over restrictive measures to freeze bank accounts of people linked to Al-Qaida, the European Parliament is taking the case before the Luxembourg Court of Justice. “It is now up to the Court to decide whether European Parliament will have codecision on the controversial black list of alleged terrorists” said European Parliament rapporteur Emine Bozkurt (S&D, NL) today. “Clearly terrorism needs to be fought, but the end does not justify all means. In Europe we should protect the fundamental rights of our citizens.” she said. “Legal experts think that the Commission and Council should have used another legal basis and that codecison should have been applied. Parliament will not let this pass and be put aside. Parliament wants to use the rights that it was given when the Treaty of Lisbon came in to effect” added Mrs. Bozkurt. “Interference by Parliament is necessary for more transparent and democratic black list procedures. People have the fundamental right to information and defence. The proposals of the Council only show minimal changes in the procedures creating the black list and are not respecting fundamental rights.” In a resolution – on which Emine Bozkurt was rapporteur – adopted on the 16th of December last year, members criticized measures put forward by the Commission following a ruling by the Court of Justice in September 2008 which struck down the EU regulation in force since 2002 on restrictive measures. In the judgment “Kadi and Al Barakaat International Foundation v. Council and Commission”, the court ruled that the regulation violated fundamental rights, in particular the right of legal defence. On the proposal, for sanctions (such as freezing bank accounts) against people and entities linked to Osama bin Laden, the Al-Qaida network and the Taleban, MEPs argued that the ordinary legislative procedure – which gives Parliament a full say in the adoption of the legislation – should be used.  Any measures taken must also be accompanied by safeguards and guarantees. They pointed out that the blacklisting procedures for the UN and EU sanctions regimes have been criticised. The effectiveness of the EU and UN ‘terrorist’ sanctions regimes should be assessed, said MEPs, since they appear to have had an adverse effect on conflict resolution and development efforts in numerous regions. Lastly, MEPs stressed that any data transferred to non-EU countries must be adequately protected and that the people and entities concerned should be kept as fully informed as possible about such data transfers. They also called for a general legal framework on data protection to be adopted as soon as possible.

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