• Time to adopt the Equal Treatment Directive

    Ten years ago, on 2 July 2008, the European Commission proposed a new anti-discrimination directive known as the Equal Treatment Directive or Horizontal Directive. But ten years late, it has yet to be adopted by the Council of the European Union. Tena Šimonović Einwalter, Equinet Chair and Deputy Ombudswoman, and Birgit Van Hout, the regional representative for Europe of the UN Human Rights Office (OHCHR), in an opinion column for Euractiv, say the proposed directive would expand protection throughout the EU against discrimination on the grounds of age, disability, religion or belief and sexual orientation, to the areas of social protection, healthcare, education, housing and access to goods and services. At present, these four grounds are only covered when it comes to employment and vocational training.

  • European Commission adopts Recommendation on standards for equality bodies

    The European Commission has today adopted a Recommendation on standards for equality bodies in order to ensure the independence and effectiveness of national equality bodies. The Recommendation, a legal act of the Commission, sets minimum standards concerning the mandate of equality bodies; their independence; their effectiveness, including sufficient resources and appropriate powers; and the national institutional architecture for equality.
    “Discrimination has no place in the EU. We must ensure that our national equality bodies are independent, with the resources to do what they do best. They are the watchdogs of justice, ensuring all citizens are given equal rights and equal opportunities”, according to Věra Jourová, European Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality.

  • Croatian parliament approved 2017 Ombudswoman's report

    On June 14th 2018 the Croatian parliament has approved the 2017 Ombudswoman's report with 114 yes votes, 3 against and 1 abstained. The report contains the analysis and assessment of the human rights situation in Croatia together with more than 200 recommendations for elimination of the systemic problems faced by the citizens. Most recommendations referred to the state administrative bodies, but also to the local and self-government units, professional associations, trade unions and others.

  • The fundamental rights of older people need to be better protected

    Fundamental rights are not just for the young. They protect everyone regardless of age,” says FRA Director Michael O’Flaherty. “We need to do a better job of protecting the older members of our communities. It’s high time to translate political commitments into tangible actions. We must stand up for the civil, political, social, economic and cultural rights of older people.

  • Obligation to respect personal dignity during police treatment

    Law enforcement officials are obliged to respect personal dignity while exercising their duties, warned Ombudswoman Lora Vidović after the complaint on the circumstances of a family eviction.

    In her letter to the Police administration she claimed that while exercising the duties with the use of physical force resulting in deprivation of liberty, it is necessary to pay an utmost attention to the personal dignity of a person under the treatment, bearing in mind that any mistreatment may lead to the violation of the constitutional rights of citizens. This especially refers to the vulnerable groups – children, evidently pregnant women, persons with disability or a psychological disorder, elderly or powerless.