6th Fundamental Rights Platform meeting

The Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP) is the agency’s channel for cooperation with over 300 civil society organisations working on a variety of fundamental rights issues across the EU.

6th Fundamental Rights Platform meeting


The Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP) meeting is one of the flagship events of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA). The meeting brings together participants of the Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP) – the agency’s network for cooperation with over 300 civil society organisations working on a variety of fundamental rights issues across the European Union.


The meeting aims to:

  • encourage a European debate on fundamental rights among different civil society organisations;
  • facilitate knowledge and exchange of good practices among FRP participants;
  • inform the work of the FRA about challenges and promising initiatives on the ground;
  • create opportunities for networking and further cooperation between civil society, the FRA and other actors.

Focus themes

This year specific focus will be dedicated to two issues - non-discrimination and hate crime. A panel debate on the first day will consider how civil society organisations together with other actors can contribute to further advancing anti-discrimination policies in the EU. On the second day, victim support organisations and other practitioners will share their experiences helping victims of hate crime and together look for promising practices in the field.


As in the past, the meeting will also invite FRP participants to discuss emerging fundamental rights issues, exchange knowledge and good practices at ‘The Floor is yours’, and learn more about the work of the FRA through Thematic workshops.

Open day at the FRA

This year for the first time, the FRA is also hosting a pre-meeting event, offering participants the opportunity to meet its experts face to face. The FRA open day will take place at the FRA premises on Wedneday, 24 April 2013, from 14.30 to 18.00.


Only organisations which are part of the Fundamental Rights Platform may participate at the meeting. Participation by other guests and observers is by invitation only.

Harvesting letter
Photo album

FRP meeting programme:


The Fundamental Rights Platform - Civil Society Cooperation




[pdf]en fr (486.91 KB)

frp2013 programme

Wednesday, 24 April (optional)



14.30- 18.00

Open day at the Fundamental Rights Agency

(Schwarzenbergplatz 11)

This year for the first time the FRA would like to invite all FRP participants to visit its premises in Vienna, get an up-close look at its work and explore possibilities for cooperation. FRA thematic area experts and project managers will be available the entire afternoon to inform you about the work of the agency and answer any questions you may have.


Informal get-together

Drinks will be served in the atrium of the FRA premises

Thursday, 25 April


Registration and welcome coffee


Plenary session I

Chair: Friso Roscam Abbing, Head of Communication Department, FRA

09.30 – 10.30

Welcome and introduction

Maija Sakslin, Chairperson of the Management Board, FRA [ Read speech ]

‘Fundamental Rights Agency: stock-tacking and looking ahead’ Morten Kjaerum, Director, FRA [ Read speech ]

Questions and answers

10.30 - 11.00

Keynote address

European Rights and Citizenship Programme: opportunities for civil society

Kinga Göncz, Member of the European Parliament, Rapporteur on Rights and Citizenship Programme (2014-2020)

Questions and answers


Coffee break

11.30- 13.00

Fostering anti-discrimination policies in the EU – tools and measures available to civil society

Panel debate with policy makers and experts, followed by a discussion with the audience

This panel will explore how equality policies can be improved in the on-going absence of an anti-discrimination directive extending beyond the area of employment. Reflecting on the prospects for the draft ‘horizontal’ directive, the panel of policymakers and representatives of civil society will examine alternative ways to improve equality policies, focusing in particular on how civil society can contribute to fostering antidiscrimination policies at both the EU and the national levels.


• Raül Romeva i Rueda, Member of the European Parliament, Rapporteur on the Horizontal Anti-Discrimination Directive
Deaglán O’Briain, Chair of the Social Questions Working Party for the Article 19 Directive, Council of the European Union
Juan Gonzalez-Mellizo,Team Leader Non discrimination policies, DG Justice, European Commission
Civil society organisation organisations working on a variety of discrimination grounds will contribute to the debate from the floor.


13.00 - 14.30 Lunch

Plenary session II


Social Rights - The role of The Council of Europe 

Presentation on the European Committee of Social Rights (ECSR) system of collective complaint

Luis Jimena Quesada, Chair of the European Committee of Social Rights, Council of Europe [ Download speech (pdf) ]

Questions and answers




"The floor is yours"

As in past years, 'The floor is yours’ invites participants to present ideas, projects or issues that are important to the fundamental rights debate in the EU.

18.30 Evening reception

Friday, 26 April

Plenary session III

Chair: Massimo Toschi, Head of Sector National Human Rights Bodies & FRP-Civil Society, FRA

09.00 - 11.00

Panel debate
Victims of hate crime: challenges and promising practices for victim support

Evidence collected by the FRA, and others, show that hate crime is a daily reality throughout the EU. Such violence and crimes can be motivated by racism, xenophobia, religious intolerance or by a person’s disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and other biases. Hate crime harms not only those targeted; it affects entire communities, and hence strikes at the heart of EU’s commitments to democracy and the fundamental rights of equality and non-discrimination.Civil society organisations are uniquely positioned to provide first-hand support for victims of bias-motivated crimes and monitor the situation on the ground.They play a crucial role, helping to bring victims of hate crime together with relevant institutions, building their trust in the police as well as providing essential medical, psychological and legal counselling. This panel debate will highlight some of the promising practices in the field and invite participants to explore together, how national and EU institutions can best support the efforts of civil society in providing help to victims of hate crime.


Joanna Perry, Hate Crime Officer, Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR), OSCE 

Harald Kröger, Liaison Officer for LGBT-Issues – Central Office for Crime Prevention – Criminal Investigation Department, Berlin Police Department, Germany

Lisbeth Garly Andersen, Project leader, Danish Institute for Human Rights

Judith Sunderland, Senior Researcher, Human Rights Watch

Joanna Goodey, Head of Department Freedoms and Justice, FRA


  • Henri Nickels, Programme Manager – Social Research, Equality and Citizens’ Rights Department, FRA 
11.00 - 11.30 Coffee break


11.30 - 13.15

Thematic workshops with the FRA

This session will focus on current FRA activities. In total, FRA will hold 12 workshops and invite FRP participants to provide feedback on its current work, while exploring mutual synergies and finding new opportunities for cooperation.

Plenary session IV

13.15 - 13.30

FRP Advisory panel - what has been achieved so far and next steps

Dominika Bychawska, Member of the FRP Advisory Panel [ Download presentation (pdf) ]

13.30 - 13.45 Closing remarks
Morten Kjaerum
, Director, FRA
13.45 Lunch

Advisory Panel meeting (For Advisory Panel members only) [ Download draft agenda (pdf) ]


FRP meeting programme:



FRP Speakers 2013

(In order of apperance)

Keynote addresses

Morten Kjaerum is the Director of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights, a position he has held since June 2008. Before joining the FRA, Mr Kjaerum served as the founding Director of the Danish Institute for Human Rights. Over 17 years in top executive roles at Denmark’s national human rights institution, Mr Kjaerum built the institute into an internationally recognised institution. An expert in human rights implementation, Mr Kjaerum has been a member of the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and the President of the International Coordination Committee for National Human Rights Institutions, a network coordinating relations between the United Nations and national institutions. Mr Kjaerum has written extensively on issues relating to human rights, in particular on refugee law, the prohibition against racial discrimination and the role of national human rights institutions. [ Read speech ]
Maija Sakslin
Maija Sakslin is the Chairperson of the FRA Management Board and Finland’s Deputy Parliamentary Ombudsman. She is an expert in constitutional and EU law, especially social rights. Previously, Ms Sakslin was a researcher at the Social Insurance Institution in Finland and at the University of Helsinki’s Institute of International Economic Law. She participated as an expert in a number of working groups on reforming the Finnish constitution. She also took part in various EU research projects, among them the Observatory for Migrant workers and Training and reporting on social security coordination. [ Read speech ]
Kinga Göncz
Kinga Göncz is a Hungarian Member of the European Parliament, member of the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D). Ms Göncz is Vice-Chair of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE), where she is serving as Rapporteur on the Rights and Citizenship Programme (2014–2020). Prior to this, Ms Göncz held a number of high-level positions in Hungary, including Minister of Foreign Affairs (2006–2009), Minister of Youth, Family and Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities (2004–2006), Minister for Equal Opportunities (June–October 2004) and Parliamentary under-secretary for the Ministry of Health, Social and Family Affairs (2002–2004).
Luis Jimena Quesada
Luis Jimena Quesada serves as President of the Council of Europe’s European Committee of Social Rights. He is also a professor of constitutional law at the University of Valencia in Spain. He has taught at the International Institute of Human Rights in Strasbourg since 1993 and, since 1997, served as a substitute judge at the High Court of Justice of the Administrative Chamber of the Valencia Autonomous Community. Mr Jimena Quesada holds degrees from the Collège Universitaire d’Études Fédéralistes (Aosta, 1990), Europäische Akademie Bayern (Gauting, Munich, 1992) and the lnternational Academy of Constitutional Law (Tunis, 1996). [ Download speech  (pdf) ]

Panel debate: Fostering anti-discrimination policies in the EU – tools and measures available to civil society

Raül Romeva i Rueda
Raül Romeva i Rueda is a Spanish Member of the European Parliament and Vice-President of the Greens/EFA Group. He is a member of the Committee of Women’s Rights and Gender Equality and the Committee of Fisheries and also serves as a substitute Member of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs. Prior to his election to the European Parliament in 2004, Mr Rueda worked as a senior analyst and consultant on armed conflict and post-war contexts at the United Nations, lecturing widely on these topics as well as on peace building and post-war rehabilitation. He was also in charge of the UNESCO Education reconstruction programme in Bosnia-Herzegovina, co-ordinated programmes and campaigns for Oxfam Spain and participated in the Spanish Campaign for Arms Control.
Deaglán Ó Briain
Deaglán Ó Briain is Principal in the Irish Department, Ministry of Justice and Equality, where he has responsibility for human rights and equality legislation, including implementation in domestic legislation of EU antidiscrimination directives. Under the Irish Presidency of the Council of the European Union, Mr Ó Briain chairs the Social Questions Working Party for the Article 19 Directive. He is also the FRA National Liaison Officer, acting as a permanent point of contact between the FRA and the Government of Ireland. Mr Ó Briain has served in a number of government departments and previously had responsibility for issues including: Irish language policy, development of programmes for support for local community development, policy inrelation to government funding and support for voluntary activity.
Juan Gonzalez-Mellizo
Juan Gonzalez-Mellizo joined the Non-discrimination policies and Roma coordination unit of the Equality Directorate in DG Justice, Freedom and Security in 2010 where he currently works as team leader of non-discrimination policies. He started working in 1998 on European affairs first in the private sector and then for the Spanish public administration. He joined the European Commission in 2004 to work in different areas related to social inclusion. He studied economics and has two Master's degrees in Political Science and Management.

Panel debate: Victims of hate crime: challenges and promising practices for victim support

Joanna Perry
Joanna Perry is a Hate Crime Officer with the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). Before this she worked as an equality and diversity policy advisor at the Crown Prosecution Service in the United Kingdom, heading the coordination of hate crime policy and performance. She was particularly focused on developing the Service’s policy and performance management structures on disability hate crime. She has published several articles on the topic of hate crime and teaches a regular Masters module on the subject. She has also worked in the voluntary sector as criminal justice police lead at Victim Support in the UK and with the human rights learning difficulties charity, Values Into Action.
Harald Kröger
Harald Kröger is a Detective Chief Inspector at the Berlin Police Department. Since April 2012 he has served as one of two Liaison Officers for LGBT issues at the Central Office for Crime Prevention. As Liaison Officer, Mr Kröger is responsible for: providing on-going police training on LGBTI persons’ rights and on crime based on homophobic prejudice; evaluating criminal offences against LGBTI; offering guidance on prevention of crime against LGBTI and related police work; assisting with related complaints; and networking with other authorities and NGOs. Mr Kröger began work with the Berlin Police Department in 1998. He is experienced in a variety of criminal investigation fields, especially violent adolescent crime and fraud.
Lisbeth Garly Andersen
Lisbeth Garly Andersen is a project manager at the Danish Institute for Human Rights. During her 11 years at the Institute, she has spearheaded a number of human rights projects in Denmark and internationally. Ms Andersen is a social anthropologist specialised in rights-based research, with particular expertise in hate crime and non-discrimination. Her main methodology is social fieldwork. Ms Andersen conducted a study on how Danish police handles hate crime and subsequently took charge of police training on hate crime. She has also been involved, in cooperation with the police, in several campaigns to combat hate crime.
Judith Sunderland
Judith Sunderland is a senior Western Europe researcher with the Europe and Central Asia division of Human Rights Watch, focusing on issues related to discrimination and intolerance, migration and asylum policy and counterterrorism. Her recent work has included research and advocacy on: summary returns of asylum seekers and unaccompanied children from Italy to Greece; racist violence in Italy and Greece; police abuse affecting minority youth in France; deaths of migrants and asylum seekers in the Mediterranean; and counterterrorism cooperation with countries that torture. Ms Sunderland previously worked in Human Rights Watch’s women’s rights division, covering Latin America.
Joanna Goodey
Joanna Goodey is Head of the Freedoms and Justice Department at the FRA. Ms Goodey, who holds a PhD in criminology, held lectureships from the mid-1990s in criminology and criminal justice – first at the Law Faculty of the University of Sheffield, and then at the University of Leeds. Subsequently, she worked for two years as a research fellow at the UN Office on Drugs and Crime. Ms Goodey is the author of an academic textbook Victims and Victimology: Research, Policy and Practice (2005), and co-editor, together with A. Crawford, of Integrating a Victim Perspective within Criminal Justice: International Perspectives (2000). She has also published over 30 academic journal articles and book chapters on issues including the criminalisation of migrants, human trafficking and survey research.


Henri Nickels
Henri Nickels is a FRA Programme Manager, responsible for social research. His areas of expertise include: hate crime, media and social representation of minorities, as well as refugees and asylum seekers; Islamophobia; counter-terrorism; research methodologies. He was previously a Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of European Transformations at London Metropolitan University. Prior to that he worked as a Research Officer at the Department of Politics in the University of Surrey.

Chairs of the meeting

Friso Roscam Abbing
Friso Roscam Abbing is Head of the Communication Department at the FRA, a position he has held since 2009. Prior to this, Mr Roscam Abbing was a Member of the Cabinet of the European Commission Vice-President Jacques Barrot, the Commissioner for Freedom, Security and Justice, after having served from 2004 to 2008 as the spokesman of European Commission Vice President Franco Frattini, the prior Commissioner for Freedom, Security and Justice issues. Between 2000 and 2004, he headed the EU Asylum Policies sector at the European Commission’s DG Justice, Freedom and Security. Before this, he led the EU Office of the European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE, 1994–2000) after starting his career as Head of the Legal Department at the Dutch Refugee Council (1986–1994).
Massimo Toschi
Massimo Toschi is a Programme Manager at the FRA in charge of cooperation with national human rights institutions, equality bodies and civil society (Fundamental Rights Platform). He is also involved in FRA work on violence against women. Previously, Mr Toschi was the Chief of the Child Protection Unit at the United Nations (UN) Peace-Keeping Mission in Haiti (2006–2009) and worked at the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict (2002–2005). Before joining the UN, Mr Toschi worked at the European Commission and was responsible for the European Initiative for Democracy and Human Rights in Moldova, Belarus, Ukraine and Mongolia. His professional career began with European NGOs in Brussels – he worked at the European Human Rights Foundation, the European Liaison Office Telefono Azzurro ‘Help Line for Children’, and the European Forum for Child Welfare.



The floor is yours

frp 2013 workshops

‘The floor is yours’

25 April, 14:30 - 18:00  

‘The floor is yours‘ is an open space for Fundamental Rights Platform participants to share the ideas, projects or issues and discuss them with colleagues from across the European Union. It provides an opportunity to openly and critically discuss issues that you feel are key to current fundamental rights debates. It aims to facilitate structured networking and the exchange of promising practices as well as to open new opportunities for collaboration. [download guidelines (docx) ]


Any FRP participant can sign up to host a session. The afternoon really IS YOURS! FRP organisations are entirely responsible for the workshop’s content. The quality of the discussions depends on the engagement and responsibility of each participant. If you are interested in hosting a session, please complete the registration form below and send it to frp@fra.europa.eu by 15 March 2013.

Please note: registrations sent after the deadline will not be accepted. Before submitting your registration form, please consult the guidelines for ‘The floor is yours’. Information about the workshops will be published in due course.


Session overview

Session I: 15:00 - 15:45

Session II: 15:55 - 16:40

Session III: 16:50 - 17:35

Session IV: 17:45 - 18:30

Session I: 15:00 - 15:45

EU Equality Action Calendar


  • Georgia Tsaklanganos, Policy Advisor, Greens – European Free Alliance (GREENS/EFA) Group, European Parliament 

The EU is founded on the common values of respect for human dignity and rights, inclusion of people belonging to minorities, equality, non-discrimination (art. 2 TEU). The proposal for a Horizontal Directive (draft) (COM(2008)0426) is blocked in the Council since 2009. This workshop is an opportunity to plan an EU Equality Action Calendar for the next 12 months: participants will be presented with a calendar including scheduled institutional events and political opportunities (like the Council social affairs working party meetings, EPSCO Council, the conclusion of the EP impact assessment, plenary debate in EP, German elections, etc.). Participants will be expected to brainstorm in order to fill in the calendar with relevant actions and/or campaign tools to promote the adoption of the blocked Horizontal Directive within the next year. The objective is to conclude on a common 12 month action calendar and commit to its fulfilment and dissemination through the FRP.

More information about the organisation on: www.greens-efa.eu

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Fighting racism and discrimination through human rights education


  • Wolfgang Benedek, Co-Director; and Barbara Schmiedl, Programme manager, ETC Graz - European Training and Research Centre for Human Rights and Democracy

Human rights have finally “arrived” at the local agenda. Still, there is a gap between human rights legislation and policies on the one hand and rights awareness, implementation measures and the use of redress mechanisms on the other. Human rights education that matters must therefore reach out for everyone - for you and me who are rights-holders - as well as for duty-bearers whose professional positions oblige them to respect, protect and fulfil human rights. On the example of the Human Rights City of Graz, the workshop will present the human rights city concept as a model for implementing and promoting human rights at the local level. Strategies, good practices and challenges of human rights education as a means to fight racism and discrimination will be presented and discussed in the workshop. 

[Download workshop presentation]

More information about the organisation on: www.etc-graz.at

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Collective complaint procedure at the ECSR


  • Luis Jimena Quesada, Chair of the European Committee of Social Rights, Council of Europe

Non-governmental organisations may lodge complaints alleging violations of the European Social Charter to the European Committee of Social Rights. The workshop will provide information on the procedure, its practical results and its impact at national level. It will also highlight the complementarity of this procedure with the right of individual petition before the European Court of Human Rights and its relation with EU legislation and, in particular, the Charter of Fundamental Rights.

More information about the organisation on: www.coe.int

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Community - living - a right for all!


  • Irene Bertana, Policy Officer, European Association of Service Providers for Persons with Disabilities (EASPD)

At this workshop, real-life experiences of care-users will set the context for a broader debate on the deinstitutionalisation of care in EU Member States. A brief introduction of the key findings of a recent study on deinstitutionalisation in the mental health sector is thought to further trigger the discussion on why it is so important to empower people with support needs and ensure that they will be involved in decisions that concern them. The EEG will also share with the audience how EU funds can support national, regional and local authorities in implementing structural reforms aimed at facilitating the development of quality family- and community-based alternatives to institutional care. This raises a number of questions on how to reach out to the Member States and how to raise awareness of the human rights violations that institutionalisation implies.

[Download workshop presentation]

[Download workshop report]

More information about the organisation on: www.easpd.eu

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Equality and non-discrimination as well as hate crime documentation with regard to christiatinity in Europe


  • Gudrun Kugler, Director, Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians

The workshop will mainly focus on the concerns of European Christians about equality and non-discrimination as well as hate crime documentation with regard to Christianity in Europe. In addition, the Report on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians in 2012 will briefly be presented. The discussion will focus on solutions.

[Download workshop presentation]

More information about the organisation on: www.intoleranceagainstchristians.eu

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Introduction to the Fundamental Rights Platform


  • Massimo Toschi, FRA and Maria Amor Estebanez Martin, FRA

This workshop will give a brief introduction to the Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP) and its main activities – annual consultations, cooperation with civil society on a project-by-project basis, knowledge exchange forums – and much more. 

[Download workshop presentation]

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Session II: 15:55 - 16:40


EU Fundamental rights policy


  • Julien Desmedt, Policy Officer, Directorate General for Justice, European Commission

During this session participants will have an opportunity to discuss the main achievements of the EU's fundamental rights policy. The workshop will retrace the process that led to the Charter entering into force, in December 2009, as a legally binding text for EU institutions and Members States when implementing EU law. Efforts to ensure the effective application of the Charter will be covered drawing on the assessments made by the Commission in the 2010 and 2011 Annual reports on the Application of the Charter.

The open discussion will focus on participants' testimonies on the use of the Charter at Member State level. By looking back at the first results achieved since the Charter gained force of law, participants will be invited to identify possible steps for further strengthening the EU's fundamental rights policy.

[Download workshop report]

More information about the organisation on: www.ec.europa.eu/justice

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Police training as a tool to better address discrimination and hate crimes


  • Gaëlle Bistiaux, Advisor - International Training, Association of European Police Colleges (AEPC)

The aim of this workshop is to present the Association of European Police Colleges, its aims, structure, partners and initiatives, with a focus on past and future initiatives linked to human rights and anti-discrimination. Following the short presentation, participants will be invited to discuss opportunities for new cooperation, synergies and initiatives in the field of anti-discrimination and fight against hate crimes between the AEPC and interested organisations.

More information about the organisation on: www.aepc.net

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Equality bodies and civil society organisations - natural allies in promoting equality and combating discrimination


  • Tamas Kadar, Senior Policy Officer, European Network of Equality Bodies (EQUINET)

This workshop will focus on the essential links between national equality bodies (NEBs) and civil society organisations as natural partners in promoting equality and fighting discrimination. The workshop will foster a better understanding of the role and specificities of national equality bodies as institutions that are part of the public administration, yet independent both from government and from civil society. Participants will be asked to share their experiences and novel ideas on effective and fruitful ways of cooperation with NEBs. The workshop will also discuss how NEBs can support and empower civil society organisations, and in what ways civil society could support NEBs, if and when their independence or effectiveness is at risk. The workshop will build on the publication: ‘Effective strategies to empower civil society’, available at the EQUINET website: http://www.equineteurope.org/Effective-Strategies-to-Empower.

[Download workshop report]

More information about the organisation on: www.equineteurope.org

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No time for questions?!  The right to ask and the right to know about human rights


  • Lydia Medland, Research and Campaigns Coordinator, Access Info Europe

In this workshop we will explore the right of access to information, or the right to ask and the right to know what public bodies do in our name. The workshop will focus on the use of access to information by human rights organisations in order to get information needed for their work on human rights issues. The workshop will be interactive with participatory exercises and games as well as space for discussion on participants’ own experiences of accessing information and obstacles that they have faced. There will be a very short presentation of some of Access Info’s own information requesting strategies for getting access to information about human rights issues. 

[Download workshop presentation]

More information about the organisation on: www.access-info.org

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Problems of representation of masses of protestors in disputes with the systems of power


  • Lozan Stoimenov, Pensioner, Movement for defence pensioners, jobless and socially weak citizens

International, EU and national legislation define rights for people, but without a reliable system for their protection. This is the reason for individuals to organise collective protests. When protestors are not members of legitimated organisation, gathering is based on announcement by some activists, without any legal authorisation to represent protestors. The claims of protestors can vary. Some are controversial and it is not clear how many people are behind particular speakers. Meetings between unauthorised representatives of protestors and authorities are fruitless and large scale riots with considerable damages and loses of lives can take place. In the EU for millions of people Article 2, p. 1 of the Charter for fundamental rights cannot be implemented, as their spending for physical survival is higher than their income. These millions may not stay peaceful. In this situation ways to establish fruitful negotiations between protestors and correspondent authorities should be found. 

[Download workshop presentation]

[Download workshop report]

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Applying human rights in the field of juvenile justice: challenges, difficulties and wayforward


  • Benoit Van Keirsbilck, Director, Défense des enfants - International Belgique

Children in the custody of the police or in criminal justice institutions are at a high risk of violence, as a result of the public perception of them as being antisocial or criminals. Much too often States use punitive approaches to respond to the situation of children in conflict with the law. A high number of children are deprived of their liberty and alternatives to detention are usually forgotten. Yet, there are many international standards applicable to juvenile justice that could help in diminishing the level of violence against these children. The workshop will give an overview of the current situation of children in the justice system and will briefly present the relevant international standards. Then, it will try to identify the possible solutions and what can be done to overcome this situation; it will see how we could use the Council of Europe “Guidelines on child friendly justice” and existing monitoring mechanisms.

More information about the organisation on: http://www.defenceforchildren.org/

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Session III: 16:50 - 17:35


The EEA Grants – Supporting fundamental rights


  • Patrizia Brandellero, Civil Society Coordinator, EEA and Norway Grants, Dovilė Šakalienė, Interim Executive Director, Human Rights Monitoring Institute (HRMI), Lithuania

Support to civil society is one of the key priorities of the EEA and Norway Grants. FRP members operating in Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Spain, Greece, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, and Slovakia are encouraged to apply for support for activities on fundamental rights within the Programmes. At Programme level, thematic meetings and initiatives will also be organised on specific topics with the participation of key human rights NGOs. This workshop will provide a general overview of the areas of support of the Grants, including the recently-launched campaign against online hate speech by the Council of Europe, in which the EEA Grants are a strategic partner. Moreover, the Human Rights Monitoring Institute, one of the Grants Operators, will present specific activities supported in the EEA Programme in Lithuania.

[Download the EEA and Norway Grants workshop presentation]

[Download the EEA and Norway workshop report]

[Download the Human Rights Monitoring Institute workshop presentation]

More information about the organisation on: www.eeagrants.org

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Equality for older LGBT people in Europe


  • Rachel Buchanan, Policy Officer, AGE-The European Older People's Platform; and Evelyne Paradis, Executive Director, ILGA-Europe

AGE Platform Europe and ILGA-Europe will present their joint policy position on the various issues which confront older LGBTI people and will open a discussion on how the specific challenges confronting older LGBTI can be further and more effectively addressed. Issues which will be considered include: the lack of recognition of same-sex couples has an impact on their access to social protection and on their financial security (people get older and cannot ensure that their (dependent) partner will have access to their pensions and assets); older LGBTI people, and in particular, older trans and intersex persons, may have specific health needs and may face ongoing stigmatisation in the field of healthcare; some older LGBTI people experience social exclusion and invisibility and cannot rely on the same family support as other older people. This raises specific challenges related to whether long-term care is inclusive of older LGBTI people needs.

[Download workshop presentation]

[Download workshop report]

More information about the organisation on: www.age-platform.eu and www.ilga-europe.org

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Exploring civil society interaction with European National Human Rights Institutions


  • Debbie Kohner, Director of Secretariat, European Group of NHRIs

National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) are recognised by international and regional human rights mechanisms as key players in the promotion and protection of human rights. They hold a unique position between the state and civil society, and yet they must remain independent of both. However, non-governmental organisations are critical partners of all NHRIs, and of the European Group. They can participate in strategic planning and inform NHRIs of their own monitoring and advocating the respect of human rights in their jurisdiction. Civil society also has an important role in the accreditation process for NHRIs. Following the recent establishment of its Permanent Secretariat, the European Group will facilitate a discussion on the interaction between civil society and its future work and the accreditation of NHRIs.

[Download workshop presentation]

[Download workshop report]

Linguistic discrimination in employment in the light of the Racial Equality Directive


  • Vadim Poleshchuk, Legal Advisor-Analyst, Legal Information Centre for Human Rights (LICHR), Estonia; and Aleksandrs Kuzmins, Secretary-Executive, Latvian Human Rights Committee (LHRC)

The workshop will be dedicated to the issue of official linguistic requirements in the labour market in the context of fight against racial discrimination and to the relevant discussion. Particular attention will be paid, procedurally, to critical assessment of case-law in Estonia and Latvia, the issue of discriminatory effect of official linguistic requirements, promotion of the principles of proportionality of restrictive measures as well as to national and regional (EU) instruments and mechanisms providing remedies. 

[Download workshop presentation]

[Download workshop report]

More information about the organisation on: www.lichr.ee

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Trade union movement and the fight against discrimination


  • Klaus Löcher, Human Rights Adviser, European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC)

As the workforce is becoming increasingly diverse, there is an urgent need to ensure recognition and non-discrimination in the workplace of all workers, regardless of their gender identity, sexual orientation, racial or ethnic origins, religion or disability. Labour market institutions and policies will have to adapt in order to guarantee a fair share in employment of all workers, as well as attention to workers’ specific needs. Trade unions play an important role in fighting against discrimination through a variety of actions and tools: negotiating with employers to ensure that discrimination in the workplace is eliminated and that equal opportunities are promoted; supporting victims of discrimination; monitoring, documenting and denouncing discrimination at the workplace. At EU, national, sectorial or enterprise level they have been carrying out many initiatives to combat discrimination and/or promote diversity.

More information about the organisation on: www.etuc.org

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Access to protection and justice for undocumented women survivors of violence


  • Rosa Logar, Co-ordinator, WAVE; and Kadri Soova, Advocacy Officer, Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM)

An undocumented woman and a survivor of violence explained to PICUM her struggle for safety and support in Sweden: “How many organizations I call? I find them on the internet, they say they work for ‘women’s rights’ and I call them and they say ‘Sorry, we can’t help you because you have no paper’. Yes, I have no paper and that’s why I need help! I get very stressed when I see these organisations on the computer, I feel very, very bad because I’m very angry…they’re liars”.

More information about the organisation on: www.picum.org and www.wave-network.org

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Session IV: 17:45 - 18:30


Human rights here, Roma rights now


  • Natacha Kazatchkine, Senior Executive Officer; and Elena Crespi, Executive Officer ESCR, Amnesty International European Institutions Office

The workshop will present Amnesty International‘s new campaign “Human Rights here. Roma Rights now” launched on 8 April (International Roma Day). The campaign exposes the discrimination and other human rights violations that Roma people suffer in EU member states, from discrimination in housing and education, to racially-motivated violence and forced evictions. It highlights the failures of the EU and its Member States to effectively combat discrimination and racism across Europe, and calls on the EC to step in more strongly to end discrimination against Roma in the EU, particularly by effectively enforcing EU anti-discrimination law. The workshop will provide an opportunity to raise awareness and mobilise support for the campaign. It is also an opportunity to share with participants experiences and practices, and discuss together advocacy and campaign strategies.

[Download workshop presentation]

More information about the organisation on: www.amnesty.eu


Populist parties and the effects on social cohesion concerning minorities


  • Ralph du Long, trainer/consultant, UNITED for Intercultural Action

On 21 March, the international day against racism, UNITED for Intercultural Action and ENAR released a press statement. We called upon political parties to re-affirm the ‘Charter for political parties for a non-racist society’. Next year we will have elections for the European Parliament. In light of the economic crisis we are facing, populist remarks may seem insignificant. But racism and open hostility towards minorities (of any kind) are assured companions of social tensions. We are in a time of great social tensions. Already we are seeing the effects in some EU Member States, where there is open violence by some political parties against migrants. Only a few weeks ago, Mr Juncker, former chair of the Euro Group, warned against nationalistic tendencies, linking them to even greater dangers. He echoed the words of Mr Van Rompuy who issued the same message two years earlier. This workshop discusses our plans to launch a campaign against these tendencies.

More information about the organisation on: www.unitedagainstracism.org

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Freedom of association for all?


  • Caroline Henrion, Project Officer, European Organisation of Military Associations (EUROMIL)

The freedom of association, enshrined in Article 12 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union as well as in other international human rights instruments, has been recognised as including the right to establish and join professional associations and trade unions. Some EU member states continue to place undue restrictions on the exercise of the freedom of association for military personnel. This session will present the current situation with regard to the freedom of association for armed forces personnel and the important role professional associations and unions can play in this sector. Participating organisations will be invited to share their experience with regard to the freedom of association in the subsequent discussion.

[Download workshop presentation]

[Download workshop report]

More information about the organisation on: www.euromil.org

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Exchange experiences concerning strategic litigation to secure fundamental rights


  • Vera Egenberger, Director, Bureau for the Implementation of Equal Treatment (BUG), Germany; and Volker Frey, Litigation Association of NGOs against Discrimination – Klagsverband, Austria

The session aims to bring together NGOs working on discrimination that are making use of legal means to tackle fundamental rights problems. Those might be NGOs focusing on one ground of discrimination or groups working across the board. We will exchange experience on how strategic litigation is used at national level and which obstacles NGOs currently face. Trends regarding litigating equal treatment at EU level will be discussed.

[Download workshop presentation]

More information about the organisation on: www.klagsverband.at and www.bug-ev.org 

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The role of the Advisory Panel: an interactive first-hand testimony 


  • Members of the Advisory Panel of the Fundamental Rights Platform

Please join members of the Advisory Panel of the Fundamental Rights Agency to discuss the role of the Advisory Panel, the appointment process of non-elected members of the Panel and about FRA in general. The hope of the presentation is to promote among FRP participants a deeper understanding and appreciation of what FRA does and how the Advisory Panel assists them in this process. As the presentation will be interactive, we invite guests to bring their questions in what we hope will be a positive and enlightening meeting.

[Download workshop presentation]

More information about FRP Advisory Panel on: http://fra.europa.eu/en/cooperation/civil-society/advisory-panel  

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Training on social, economic and cultural rights


  • Elizabeta Kitanović, Executive Secretary for Human Rights and Communication, Church and Society Commission of CEC

Upon request of churches in the Euro Mediterranean region, the Conference of European Churches together with the Federation of the Protestant Churches in Italy is in the process of organising a training workshop on social, economic and cultural rights. The training will target at responsible in churches around the Mediterranean who are already engaged in human rights work and it will use material published in the manual European Churches engaging in Human Rights. Present Challenges and Training Material (2012). On the basis of this material and experiences from previous trainings, this workshop will want to explore with FRP participants the value of a rights-based approach to social, economic and cultural issues, models of best practices in the NGO field in addressing these issues and looking ar elements for training sessions which could be of help in different contexts. Participants are invited to share their experiences and materials.

More information about the organisation on: www.ceceurope.org

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FRA Workshops

FRA Workshops

Thematic workshops with the FRA

26 April, 11:30 - 13:15 

This session will focus on current FRA activities. In total, FRA will hold 12 workshops and invite FRP participants to provide feedback on its current work, while exploring mutual synergies and finding new opportunities for cooperation.



Sessions overview

Session I : 11:30 - 12:15

Session II: 12:30-13:15


Session I: 11:30 - 12:15

Victim support services for victims of hate crime

  • Henri Nickels, Albin Dearing

Evidence collected by FRA, and others, shows that hate crime is a daily reality throughout the EU. Such violence and crimes can be motivated by racism, xenophobia, religious intolerance or by a person’s disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and other biases. Hate crime harms not only those targeted; it affects entire communities, and hence strikes at the heart of EU commitments to democracy and the fundamental rights of equality and non-discrimination.

This workshop will look at civil society organisations’ crucial role in supporting victims of hate crime. It will highlight promising practices and explore how national and EU institutions can best support the efforts of civil society in providing help to victims of hate crime.

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Communicating fundamental rights through social media


  • Alison Taylder, Tara Morris, Massimo Toschi

How do we engage with our target audience via social media channels ?

This workshop will enable organisations to exchange knowledge about how they are using social media channels as a communications tool.

  • What is working well, what not so well?
  • Which social media sites do you follow regularly?
  • How would you like to develop your social media channels?

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Cutting across discrimination grounds: how to bring a horizontal approach?

  • Dennis Van Derveur, Maria Amor Estebanez Martin

In this workshop FRA will provide examples of a horizontal approach to non-discrimination and equality research in light of recent policy developments. Participants are invited to contribute to the discussions and provide examples from their organisations on how to bring a horizontal approach to discussions, research and concrete projects promoting non-discrimination and equality.

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Combating violence against women
  • Sami Nevala

FRA is in the process of analysing the results from its EU-wide survey on gender-based violence against women. While the survey results will be available in the beginning of 2014, it’s time to identify which policy processes the survey results could feed into, and how cooperation with various organisations can ensure that the survey results can have an impact on policy making on national and European level.

In this session, participants are encouraged to share ideas on modes of cooperation, activities and events, where the survey results could be presented and discussed. The session will also seek to identify processes where the survey results could inform policy makers. These include the revision of national legislation, or efforts to draft action plans to combat violence against women and to implement and evaluate these action plans.

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Roma inclusion in the EU and the role of civil society organisations


  • Eva Sobotka, Michail Beis, Sheena Keller

What are the next steps for civil society organisations in accelerating the process of Roma inclusion in the EU? Is there new potential that civil society organisations could explore?

The workshop will provide space for civil society organisations to debate:

  • What potential do civil society organisations have to accelerate Roma inclusion in the EU?
  • How civil society organisations set their priorities and whom they represent?
  • What outcomes would be desirable and how to get there?
  • How to involve Roma in processes and policies towards Roma integration?

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FRA cooperation with JHA agencies: Frontex consultative forum


  • Aydan Iyiguengoer, FRA
  • Stefan Kessler, Jesuit Refugee Service
How does the newly-established Frontex Consultative Forum function? What is its potential and what are its limitations?

In this workshop the purpose and objectives of the newly-established Frontex Consultative Forum will be presented.

Discussion will focus around the following questions:
- What other NGOs are active in any comparable body at either national or European level? And what lessons learned, good practices can they share?
- How can the Consultative Forum inform the NGOs work or vice versa?

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Session II: 12:30 - 13:15

The role of civil society in monitoring and increasing reporting of incidents of hate crime
  • Henri Nickels, Albin Dearing


  • Melissa Sonnino, Community Affairs Coordinator, A Jewish Contribution to an Inclusive Europe (CEJI)

Civil society organisations can play an important role in monitoring and recording incidents of hate crime, in close cooperation with law enforcement agencies and the criminal justice system. Victims or witnesses can also report hate crimes by using third-party reporting, or systems whereby incidents can be reported through web applications, smartphones and other technological means. The aim of this workshop is to explore how to reinforce the role of civil society in monitoring and increasing reporting of incidents of hate crime to ensure better and more accurate reporting of hate crime incidents.

The workshop will start with a presentation of project ‘Facing Facts’ by the Jewish Contribution to an Inclusive Europe. The workshop aims to engage participants in a discussion on strategies how to increase reporting and monitor hate crime in the EU.

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FRA CLARITY project - Complaints, Legal Assistance and Rights Information Tools for You


  • Jana Gajdosova, Alison Taylder, Pia Tirronen

This workshop will present the objectives of the CLARITY pilot project and discuss the needs from the civil society perspective with regard to the functionalities of this online tool. The feedback of FRP participants will be highly valued as they are one of the target groups and possible users of the tool. If your organisation represents, and/or provides advice and information to potential victims of fundamental rights violations, we very much welcome you to attend this session, and to share your ideas and suggestions for the design of this pilot online tool!  

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FRA LGBT survey - How can we make best use of the survey results?


  • Dennis Van Derveur, Miltos Pavlou

In this workshop we will present some first observations based on the results of the survey. The workshop will also focus on the way the survey was set up and then discuss ways forward with the participants. In other words, how to use the results on a national level?

Participants are encouraged to share with FRA how the results should be communicated and used by civil society in EU Member States.

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Antisemitism today – ways forward


  • Sami Nevala, Eva Sobotka
In 2011-2012, FRA communicated the results on various activities related to antisemitism. This session will discuss the possibilities for follow-up action – based on the evidence of FRA research in the area. The participants are invited to discuss various modes of cooperation and joint action, as well as important policy processes at the national, as well as the European level, which should be addressed to improve the situation concerning antisemitism.

Fundamental rights at the local level - challenges and opportunities when working together with local authorities
  • Andreas Accardo

Fulfilling fundamental rights is a shared responsibility across government levels. Local and regional authorities are responsible for many policy areas which have an impact on people's fundamental rights.

This workshop seeks to explore challenges and opportunities for non-governmental human rights organisations when working together with local authorities.

What are the experiences of civil society with local authorities? Which challenges arise? Are there good examples of effective partnerships to promote and protect fundamental rights at the local level?

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FRA – FRP cooperation
  • Joerg Gebhard and Ann-Charlotte Nygard

This workshop will invite participants to explore together how civil society organisations can use the Fundamental Rights Platform to better achieve their goals; and how we can all together improve dialogue and cooperation between FRA and FRP participants. 

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Open day

Open day

Open day

24 April, 13:30 - 18:15 

On the occasion of the 6th FRP meeting, for the first time the FRA invites civil society organisations to visit the agency’s premises in Vienna and meet FRA experts face-to-face. All FRA thematic area experts and project managers will be available the entire afternoon to inform participants about the work of the agency and answer questions around the agency’s work.





13:30-14:30 Arrival and registration

14:30 - 15:15 Welcome and introduction: FRA mandate, scope of activities and Fundamental Rights Platform - Gabriel Toggenburg, Maria Amor Estebanez Martin and Massimo Toschi

Info session I: 15:30 - 16:15

  • Multiple discrimination - Host: Ludovica Banfi
  • FRA Roma programme: participatory action research with local authorities - Hosts: Eva Sobotka and Sheena Keller
  • Access to justice - Hosts: Jonas Grimheden and Jana Gajdosova
  • Severe forms of labour explotation - Hosts: Albin Dearing and Alice Hamilton
  • Meeting with the FRA front-line communicators and co-operators - Host: Waltraud Heller, Joerg Gebhard, Inga Rudecka, Sara Sighinolfi

Info session II: 16:30 -17:15

  • Rights of irregular migrants - Hosts: Ann-Charlotte Nygard, Adriano Silvestri and Martina Huber
  • Collecting ethnic data - FRA Roma survey - Host: Sabine Springer
  • Access to justice - Hosts: Jonas Grimheden and Jana Gajdosova
  • Victims of hate crime - Hosts: Albin Dearing and Alice Hamilton
  • FRA Gender-based violence against women survey - Host: Sami Nevala

Info Session III: 17:30 - 18:15

  • Third country nationals at the EU land and sea borders - Hosts: Ann-Charlotte Nygard, Adriano Silvestri and Martina Huber
  • Child participation in FRA research - Hosts: Astrid Podsiadlowski and Silvia Randazzo
  • FRA LGBT survey and other projects - Hosts: Dennis Van Der Veur and Miltos Pavlou
  • Rights of people with disability - Hosts: Nevena Peneva and Martha Stickings
  • Data protection and privacy - Hosts: Mario Oetheimer , Krisztina Baranyos, Niraj Nathwani, Delfina Boni

18:15: Informal get-together




Welcome and introduction: FRA mandate, scope of activities and FRP

[pdf]en (2.02 MB)
Practical info

frp2013 practical info

Participation at the meeting is only possible for organisations part of the Fundamental Rights Platform. Participation of other guests and observers is by invitation only.

Contact FRA

For more information about the Fundamental Rights Platform meeting and possibilities to participate, please contact us at: frp@fra.europa.eu

You can find more information on how to get to the FRA premises on our contact page.

Location & how to get there

The meeting will take place on 24-26 April 2013 in Messe Wien Exhibition & Congress Center in Vienna.

Wien Exhibition & Congress Center
Wien Exhibition & Congress Center

Messeplatz 1 PF 277
AT - 1021 Vienna

The venue is served by two underground stations: U1 (Praterstern stop) and U2 (Prater Messe stop). The venue also has excellent links with the airport, the highway and rail networks. You can reach it in 20 minutes by taxi from the Vienna International Airport.

Wheelchair image

The meeting is accessible to persons with disabilities. In case you need further assistance, please get in touch with the organisers. We will do our best to cater for your individual needs.


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Past editions

frp past editions

Audience at the 5th FRP meeting
Plenary at the 6th FRP eeting

6th Fundamental Rights Platform meeting
Vienna, 25-26 April 2012

The 6th FRP meeting in 2013 focused on two topics: non-discrimination and hate crime. A panel debate on the first day will consider how civil society organisations together with other actors can contribute to further advancing anti-discrimination policies in the EU. On the second day, victim support organisations and other practitioners will share their experiences helping victims of hate crime and together look for promising practices in the field.

2013 Programme [EN] [FR] (pdf)
2013 Harvesting letter (pdf)

Audience at the 5th FRP meeting
Questions and answers at the 5th FRP meeting

5th Fundamental Rights Platform meeting
Vienna, 19-20 April 2012

The 5th FRP meeting in 2012 focused on two topics: Cooperation between national human rights institutions, equality bodies and civil society protecting victims’ rights and addressing under-reporting; and "Multiple discrimination: mainstreaming intersectionality into fundamental rights work". The event taking place in Vienna attracted participants from about 180 civil society organisations who took the opportunity for networking and good practice exchange. With interactive sessions like ‘The Floor is yours ‘ where participants presented ideas and Thematic workshops with FRA experts the 5th FRP meeting was a dynamic and interactive event where all participants contributed to discussions and together shaped the meeting’s outcomes.

2012 Programme [EN] [FR] (pdf)
2011 Meeting report (pdf)

Audience at the 4th FRP meeting
Audience at the 4th FRP meeting

4th Fundamental Rights Platform meeting
Vienna, 14-15 April 2011

In 2011 the FRP meeting focused on three themes – access to justice: how civil society organisations can help victims to claim their rights; cooperation between civil society and the FRA; and participation of civil society organisations in the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Besides plenary discussions, the FRP meetings are also an opportunity for knowledge exchange and networking. During ‘The floor is yours’, FRP participants hosted over 30 interactive workshops on a variety of fundamental rights issues. ‘Talking Tables’ provided an opportunity to meet FRA experts and give feedback to ongoing FRA projects.

2011 Programme [EN] [FR] (pdf 89KB)
2011 Meeting report (pdf 1332KB)

Plenary discussion at the 3rd FRP Meeting
Plenary discussion at the 3rd FRP Meeting

3rd Fundamental Rights Platform meeting
Vienna, 15-16 April 2010

The meeting addressed the human rights dimension of poverty and social exclusion and the implication of the Lisbon Treaty on the protection of fundamental rights. The meeting also provided feedback and suggestions for the Agency’s Annual Work Programme 2012.

2010 Programme (pdf 89KB)
2010 Meeting report (pdf 635KB)

Working Groups at the 2nd FRP Meeting
Working Groups at the 2nd FRP Meeting

2nd Fundamental Rights Platform meeting
Vienna, 5-6 May 2009

In 2009 the meeting discussed the impact of the economic crisis on human rights and looked for solutions addressing under-reporting by victims of fundamental rights violations. FRA’s Annual Work Programmes 2010 and 2011 were also discussed during the meeting.

2009 Programme (pdf 87KB)
2009 Meeting report (pdf 174KB)

1st Fundamental Rights Platform meeting
Vienna, 7-8 October 2008

For the first time the Fundamental Rights Platform gathered in 2008 with an objective to provide feedback and suggestions for the Agency’s work. The first meeting focused on the FRA’s Annual Work Programme 2009, Annual Report 2008; and discussed the means of effective cooperation between the Agency’s and civil society in the future.

2008 Programme (pdf 53KB)
2008 Meeting report (pdf 50KB)