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Guides on the EU Social Policy.
International Day for the elimination of Violence against women
The United Nations General Assembly has designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (Resolution 54/134). The premise of the day is to raise awareness of the fact that women around the world are subject to rape, domestic violence and other forms of violence; furthermore, one of the aims of the day is to highlight that the scale and true nature of the issue is often hidden.
2015 Pension Adequacy Report
A new report shows that EU’s pension systems can be expected to deliver adequate pensions to future generations of retirees provided strong policies to enable workers to stay in jobs until they reach the statutory pension age are pursued.
New framework for Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment
The European Commission and the European External Action Service adopted on 20 September a new framework for the EU's activities on gender equality and women's empowerment in EU's external relations.
Long-term unemployment: Commission guidance to EU Member States
The European Commission proposed on 17 September guidance to Member States to better help long-term unemployed return to work.
Simplifying access to European Structural and Investment Funds
The European Commission announced on 9 June its intention to create a High Level Group on simplification. Its aim is to reduce the administrative burden for beneficiaries to access the five European Structural and Investment Funds– the European Regional Development Fund, the European Social Fund, the Cohesion Fund, the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.
EU social policy - orientation debate
The Commission held an orientation debate on 9 June to discuss how EU policy can best address social and employment challenges in Europe. EC president Juncker's political guidelines already underline the need for social fairness and aim to reinforce principles of a European Social Market Economy. The outcome of today's debate will feed into the Commission's work programme for the rest of the mandate.
EU Employment and Social Situation Quarterly Review March 2015
The economic situation in the EU has started gradually improving nearly two years ago, and most Member States have recently registered positive GDP growth. Employment has started picking up, with improvements now materialising in most sectors, according to the latest Employment and Social Situation Quarterly Review.
Gender equality: challenges for the EU
Ahead of International Women's Day (8 March), the European Commission is reaffirming its commitment to tackle gender inequalities across the EU.
Employment and Social Developments in Europe 2014
Countries providing high quality jobs and effective social protection as well as investment in human capital have proved to be more resilient to the economic crisis. This is one of the main findings of the 2014 Employment and Social Developments in Europe Review, which has looked back to the consequences of the recession. It also stresses the need to invest in the formation and maintenance of the right skills of the workforce to support productivity, as well as the challenge of restoring convergence among Member States.
Access City Award 2015 for disabled-friendly cities
The 2015 Access City Award has been won by the Swedish city of Borås, the European Commission announced on 3 December. The Award recognises Borås's comprehensive and strategic approach to creating an accessible city for all; a good example of local action to help removing the many barriers that people with disabilities still face in their daily life.
Draft Joint Employment Report - guide
The new cycle of the European Semester, the EU's yearly economic policy-making cycle, has been launched with the publication of the Annual Growth Survey 2015 by the European Commission. The latest draft Joint Employment Report, which accompanies the Annual Growth Survey 2015 analyses employment and social trends and challenges as well as presents the policy responses deployed by Member States to improve the employment and social performance. It also contains the second edition of the scoreboard of key employment and social indicators introduced to strengthen the social dimension of the Economic and Monetary Union by gaining a better understanding of the labour market and social developments at risk. The Report serves as a basis for further analysis, surveillance and coordination throughout the European Semester.
Erasmus Impact Study: key findings
Young people who study or train abroad not only gain knowledge in specific disciplines, but also strengthen key transversal skills which are highly valued by employers. A new study on the impact of the European Union's Erasmus student exchange programme shows that graduates with international experience fare much better on the job market. They are half as likely to experience long-term unemployment compared with those who have not studied or trained abroad and, five years after graduation, their unemployment rate is 23% lower. The study, compiled by independent experts, is the largest of its kind and received feedback from nearly 80 000 respondents including students and businesses.
Report on the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and Progress Report on Gender Equality
The 4th annual report published today by the European Commission on the application of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, shows that the importance and prominence of the EU Charter continues to rise: the Court of Justice of the EU increasingly applies the Charter in its decisions while national judges are more and more aware of the Charter's impact and seek guidance from the European Court of Justice. The European Commission has also progressively sought to bring the Charter to life by taking action to promote and defend the rights of EU citizens laid down in the Charter. Since 2010, the European Commission has put in place a 'fundamental rights checklist' and as a result screens every legislative proposal to ensure it is "fundamental-rights proof". The annual report on the application of the Charter tracks the progress made and identifies challenges and concerns. It shows: the European Commission places fundamental rights at the heart of all EU policies.
Proposal on increasing Gender Equality in the Boardrooms of Listed Companies
Companies listed on stock exchanges in the EU would have to bring in transparent recruitment procedures so that by 2020, at least 40% of their non-executive directors are women, under a draft EU directive voted by Parliament on 20 November 2013. MEPs propose that companies which fail to introduce such procedures should face penalties. In 2013, only 17.6% of non-executive board members of the EU's largest companies were women.
European Union Solidarity Fund reform
The European Commission proposed on 3 October to allocate more than 360 million EUR to Germany in response to the serious flooding in late spring, May and June of this year. The European Solidarity Fund exists to give support to those countries when help is needed to regain economic stability after natural disasters.
Roma integration: Progress Report and Recommendation
The European Commission has called on Member States to deliver on their commitments to ensure equality and to do more to improve the economic and social integration of Europe's 10 to 12 million Roma. The call follows the Commission's progress report released today which shows that Member States need to do better in implementing their national Roma integration strategies submitted under the EU Framework for national Roma integration strategies. The new report is accompanied by a proposal for a Recommendation addressed to EU countries which proposes to Member States on the one hand specific measures, including positive action, and on the other hand, horizontal policy measures, including local actions to improve the situation of Roma people. Member States would have two years to put concrete measures into practice to make a difference for Roma people on the ground.
Charter of Fundamental Rights and on Progress in Gender Equality: EU report
Three years after it became legally binding, the European Union's Charter of Fundamental Rights is becoming a point of reference not only for the EU institutions when drawing up legislation but also for the European and national courts, making fundamental rights a reality for citizens in Europe. These are the findings of today's third annual report on the application of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, covering 2012, which illustrates with a wide range of fundamental rights related cases that the EU is continuing to build a more coherent system for protecting people's fundamental rights. Today's report is accompanied by a new progress report on equality between women and men during 2012 and it coincides with a series of new actions to reinforce citizens' rights that the Commission has put forward in its 2013 EU Citizenship Report.
Industrial relations report: social dialogue under strain in Europe
The on-going economic crisis poses a serious challenge to the dialogue between workers' and employers' representatives and governments according to a report published today by the European Commission. The report shows that recent government reforms have not always been accompanied by fully effective social dialogue, leading to increasingly conflictual industrial relations in Europe.
Quarterly Review analyses deepening social crisis
The employment and social situation in the EU remained critical in the fourth quarter of 2012 with employment receding overall and unemployment rising further, while households' financial situation remained serious according to the European Commission's latest Employment and Social Situation Quarterly Review. The adverse effects of public budget cuts and tax increases on employment and living standards are increasingly apparent in certain Member States. The Review also notes that net immigration from outside the EU has slowed down and that the crisis has adversely affected fertility.
The Social Investment Package
The European Commission has called on EU Member States to prioritise social investment and to modernise their welfare states. This means better performing active inclusion strategies and a more efficient and more effective use of social budgets. The call features in a Communication on Social Investment for Growth and Cohesion just adopted by the Commission. The Communication also offers guidance to Member States on how best to use EU financial support, notably from the European Social Fund, to implement the outlined objectives. The Commission says it will closely monitor the performance of individual Member States' social protection systems through the European Semester and formulate, where necessary, Country Specific Recommendations.