Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 34 n° 316

Posts Tagged ‘Morten Kjaerum’

FRA Director sums up Agency’s achievements and looks towards future work and challenges

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 9 marzo 2015

Morten_KjærumOutgoing FRA Director Morten Kjaerum spoke to the European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) on the Agency’s achievements since its establishment in 2007 and its role in meeting the EU’s fundamental rights challenges in the coming years.“Over the last seven years we have created a unique pool of data on key fundamental rights issues throughout Europe on which we had little or no knowledge about before,” he said. “Those big surveys have added up to give all of us a very detailed insight that has helped to formulate more targeted policy.”The Director, who will be leaving FRA at the end of March after seven years at the Agency, gave the example of FRA’s survey of 42,000 women across the EU about their experiences of violence, the Agency’s online survey of 93,000 LGBT people throughout the EU, the survey of Roma that was carried out in cooperation with the European Commission and the United Nations Development Programme, and which provided information on more than 84,000 people, the survey of 23,500 ethnic minorities across the EU, and the survey of almost 6,000 Jews in the eight EU Member States in which approximately 90% of the EU’s Jewish population lives.
Speaking of the fundamental rights challenges faced by the EU in the wake of the attacks in Paris and Copenhagen, he emphasised the importance of integrating human rights into EU policy from the outset and not “compartmentalising” them, as they are relevant to all policy agendas. In addition, social rights need to move higher up the agenda, as the frustration caused by austerity programmes and growing inequality cannot be ignored. Particularly in the current debate, human rights and security should be regarded as two sides of the same coin: “Human rights are often termed a ‘soft issue’. It’s not about hard or soft though, but about smart approaches,” he said. “Maybe we need new legislation, but maybe we also need to think more about how we work as an inclusive society, and how we can create more social cohesion in Europe.”In her address to the same meeting, Maija Sakslin, outgoing Chair of FRA’s Management Board, spoke about FRA’s forthcoming work this year. These included the publication of FRA’s findings on the subject of labour exploitation in the EU in June, as well as the results of its work on national intelligence services and surveillance, which has been carried out at the LIBE Committee’s request, following last year’s resolution by the European Parliament on the NSA’s surveillance programme.Both the Director and the Management Board Chair mentioned the issue of broadening FRA’s mandate to enable the Agency to contribute more to safeguarding fundamental rights in the EU, for example by allowing FRA to formulate Opinions on upcoming legislation on its own initiative, rather than having to wait for a request from one of the EU institutions. The ability to work more widely on social rights in the aftermath of the economic crisis was also mentioned.LIBE Chair Claude Moraes paid tribute to Morten Kjaerum’s work for the Agency and for doing a “tough job” at a difficult time. Other members of the Committee from across the political spectrum thanked FRA for putting fundamental rights at the top of the agenda and asked the Agency to consider beginning or increasing its work in the future on:online hate crime data protection and mass surveillance, particularly PNR internal security rule of law.

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Renewed efforts needed to help protect girls from violence

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 14 febbraio 2015

gender violenceOne in three women have experienced physical or sexual violence by an adult in childhood, according to the results of FRA’s survey on violence against women published last March. This translates to roughly 61 million women in the EU. Such levels of abuse underline the need for the EU to renew their efforts to address the widespread and under-reported abuse that girls are exposed to.
“Throughout the EU many girls have been physically or sexually abused,” said FRA Director Morten Kjaerum on V-Day, in support of the global movement to end violence against women and girls. “This is unacceptable. The EU and Member States need to make sure girls are protected and cycles of abuse are stopped. This means targeting polices, legislation and programmes to reach those girls most at risk to end their suffering.”FRA’s survey on violence against women revealed the extent and nature of abuse against women and girls across the EU. The results were based on face-to-face interviews with 42,000 women in the 28 EU Member States. They provide reliable and comparable data on childhood experiences of violence.As with other areas of FRA research, the results point to widespread under-reporting as the scale of the abuse does not match the number of incidents reported to the authorities. To address this, specialist support systems, with adequate resources, are therefore crucial, as FRA’s recent report on victim support services across the EU also highlighted. Such measures will increase trust in the authorities and help young girls report instances of abuse. This in turn will help improve their access to justice.The needs of girls who are child victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse should also be better addressed during judicial proceedings. In spring this year, FRA will publish a comparative report on child participation in judicial proceedings which draws on examples of cases of domestic violence and sexual abuse. The preliminary findings highlight the importance of ensuring the child’s right to be heard and to receive information. For this, specific measures and training are required to help professionals better understand and cater to the needs of child victims, in line with the EU’s Victims’ Directive and the Council of Europe’s guidelines on child-friendly justice. For example, training lawyers or court workers to adequately inform and interview girls who have suffered abuse, or ensuring that girl victims of sexual violence are interviewed, whenever possible, by female professionals.From the scale of abuse revealed by FRA’s survey, it is clear that girls and young women need better protection. To help, FRA’s research points to some ways that should significantly alleviate the suffering of the many abused girls across Europe. These include dedicated support services and trained professionals, such as police, social workers, lawyers, prosecutors and judges, who can help girls seek justice.

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Civil Liberties MEPs debate counter-terrorism, de-radicalisation and foreign fighters

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 27 gennaio 2015

terroristiIn the run-up to the informal Justice and Home Affairs Council on 29 January, in Riga, and to the European Council on 12 February, Civil Liberties MEPs will debate counter-terrorism and counter-radicalisation measures and possible future proposals and activities in this field with the European Commission’s Director General for Migration and Home Affairs, Matthias Ruete, the EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator, Gilles de Kerchove, the Head of the Radicalisation Awareness Network (RAN) Secretariat, Omar Ramadan, the Director of the EU Fundamental Rights Agency, Morten Kjaerum, and the European Data Protection Supervisor, Giovanni Buttarelli.
The debate in the Civil Liberties Committee will be webstreamed here – EP Live
On 21 January, the Civil Liberties Committee Chair, Claude Moraes (S&D, UK), presented a first “counter-terrorism and counter-radicalisation roadmap”, in terms of upcoming meetings and activities

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The Civil Liberties Committee will hold a meeting

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 24 gennaio 2015

Terrorista– Joint debate on counter-terrorism, de-radicalisation and foreign fighters, as a follow-up to the attacks in Paris on 7-9 January and in the run-up to the informal Justice and Home Affairs Council on 29-30 January, in Riga (Tuesday, 9.15 – 11.30):Exchange of views with Dimitris Avramopoulos, Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship;Exchange of views with Gilles de Kerchove, EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator; Presentation of the Radicalisation Awareness Network (RAN) by Omar Ramadan, Head of the RAN Secretariat;
Presentations by:Morten Kjaerum, Director of the EU Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA);Giovanni Buttarelli, European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS).Vote – jointly with the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee
– Prevention of the use of the financial system for the purpose of money laundering and terrorist financing [rapporteurs Krišjānis Kariņš (EPP, LV) and Judith Sargentini (Greens/EFA, NL)] and information accompanying transfers of funds [rapporteurs Peter Simon (S&D, DE) and Timothy Kirkhope (ECR, UK)] – reconsultation of the committees (room JAN 4Q2, 15.00 – 15.30)

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Action needed to ensure that all people with disabilities can vote

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 29 aprile 2014

european votePeople with disabilities are active citizens keen to participate in political life given the right opportunities. However, legal, administrative and accessibility barriers can still prevent them from taking part in elections finds the latest research on the rights of people with disabilities from the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA).“Political participation is a basic right that everyone should enjoy equally,” says FRA Director Morten Kjaerum. “Yet, FRA’s report underlines that many barriers can undermine the democratic rights of people with disabilities. With European elections around the corner, it is timely reminder that across the EU change is needed to allow all people with disabilities to have an equal say in the political life of our society.”Together with the European Commission, FRA developed a set of human rights indicators on how the right to political participation, as described in the UN’s Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), is being respected, promoted and fulfilled across the EU. The data which populate these indicators show that given the opportunity people with disabilities actively participate in politics through voting, political meetings and engaging with elected officials. However, the data also reveal that significant challenges remain which affect some people with disabilities more than others.

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FRA is on a good track, finds external evaluation

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 13 luglio 2013

The Council Working Party on Fundamental Rights, Citizens Rights and Free Movement of Persons (FREMP) will discuss the results of FRA’s independent external evaluation on 9 July. The FRA Management Board’s recommendations resulting from this evaluation will also be discussed. The Chairperson of the FRA Management Board, Maija Sakslin, and FRA Director, Morten Kjaerum, will take part in the meeting.“Since FRA was established six years ago, we have come a long way. We have grown into a strong institution that has become a point of reference in the EU’s fundamental rights landscape,” says FRA Director Morten Kjaerum. “I am proud of what the agency has achieved to date. The findings from this evaluation will help guide us in the future – so we can increasingly help to protect and promote fundamental rights across the EU, both at EU and national level.”Key conclusions from the external report include:FRA is considered a unique provider of comparative, EU-wide studies on fundamental rights.
FRA is seen as accessible and responsive to stakeholders and their needs; respondents are satisfied with the agency’s work.
Member States appreciate FRA’s work at the EU level. However, they believe FRA should increase its relevance and visibility nationally.
Generally, the coordination and cooperation with all key stakeholders, including with the Council of Europe, were assessed very positively.
Civil society organisations are satisfied with the agency’s work, but think the agency’s mandate should be broader. The agency’s Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP) is acknowledged as an effective cooperation channel between FRA and civil society.This evaluation process is required by FRA’s Founding Regulation, which states that FRA must carry out an external evaluation five years after its creation. Ramboll, the independent external evaluator, interviewed over 300 of FRA’s key partners and stakeholders – either online, by phone or face-to-face. Questions were asked about the impact of the agency’s work, its efficiency and effectiveness, EU added value and coherence.
The FRA Management Board received Ramboll’s evaluation report at the end of last year. The board made recommendations based on the evaluation, which were recently presented to the European Commission and the Council of the EU. The European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions received the External Evaluation together with the FRA Management Board recommendations. The European Commission will publish the final report.

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