The most effective way to counter hate speech is to reinforce the values of democracy and human rights that it threatens, the heads of three intergovernmental human rights institutions said today in a joint statement on the eve of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
In an address to a Danish Parliamentary hearing on how to safeguard fundamental rights in the EU, FRA’s Director, Morten Kjaerum, said that the EU and its Member States could be more focused and proactive in the use of the tools at their disposal. He was speaking at a hearing of the Danish Parliament’s European Affairs Committee that took place on 12 March in Copenhagen. The debate questioned whether the fundamental values of the EU are under pressure and asked what the EU could do.
FRA took part in the NGO Forum Riga 2015 from 2-3 March which sought to identify actions that can promote more active participation and involvement of civil society in decision making at the national and the EU level.
On 3-4 March in Brussels, 85 representatives of civil society, governments, law enforcement, national prosecution offices and international organisations from 19 European countries convened in Brussels for the two-day European Conference on a victim-centred approach to tackling hate crimes.
FRA guided the EU Agencies network through a year of institutional change while heading the network over the last 12 months. During this time FRA strengthened relations between Agencies and the new European Parliament and European Commission while helping to raise the visibility of Agencies’ work among Member States, stakeholders and the people of Europe.
One year since the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) published the results of its groundbreaking survey on combating violence against women, concerted action is still needed to help make it happen, the theme of this year’s International Women’s Day.