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Civil society space: views of organisations

Civil society organisations play a critical role in democracies, and the importance of their work is widely recognised in international legal and policy documents. However, they face many obstacles when it comes to their day-to-day work. Based on the results of an online consultation with FRA's civil society network, the Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP), in September 2018, this paper complements the January 2018 report.

Civil society organisations (CSOs) face many obstacles when it comes to their day-to-day work, ranging from changes in the legal environment, challenges in finding and accessing resources, to obstacles in accessing policymaking, and threats and attacks.

The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) cooperates closely with civil society organisations working on human rights in the European Union.

A FRA report from January 2018 looked into the different types and patterns of challenges that CSOs working on human rights face in the EU.

In September 2018, FRA carried out an online consultation with its civil society network, the Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP), to complement the findings of its report. The results of the online consultation confirm earlier messages and point to the need to provide civil society with the resources and the ‘safe space’ that it needs to flourish and operate.

This paper summarises the consultation’s key findings, including relevant points from FRA’s 2018 Fundamental Rights Forum.