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Vacancies

Apply for our Organisation Management Traineeship!

APPLICATION DEADLINE: 26 APRIL 2019 (EOB)

The Equinet Secretariat, based in central Brussels, is opening a new 6 –months long internship position for an organisation management type of position with a project management inclination.

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Strategic Plans

Strategic Plan 2019-2022

Equinet, as a strong, engaged and innovative network, will continue to strengthen and support equality bodies and act as their expert voice to advance equality and non-discrimination in Europe. Our goal is to enable national equality bodies to fulfil their full potential to support people experiencing discrimination and to achieve substantive equality for all. Considering the increasingly challenging political, demographic and digital environment across Europe, enhancing the role of equality bodies as key champions for equality and safeguards for non-discrimination is more crucial than ever.

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Secretariat

Equinet Secretariat Team

The Brussels-based Secretariat is headed by the Executive Director. It is geared first and foremost towards serving the network and its structures: AGM, Executive Board, Working Groups or other participative working structures.

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Executive Board

Equinet Executive Board 2017-2019

The elected Executive Board is responsible for the overall management of the network and constitutes the strategic leadership of Equinet.

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About Us

Standards for Equality Bodies

Why standards for equality bodies?

EU Directives require all EU Members States, accession countries and EEA countries to designate an equality body for the promotion of equal treatment. However, the Directives only provide minimum standards for the competences and limited functional independence of equality bodies and do not guarantee complete independence, effectiveness, sufficient powers and adequate resources for equality bodies.

Annual Report 2010
Annual Report 2010
The vulnerability of equality bodies has been a concern for Equinet for some time now. In our 2010 Annual report, Chair Mandana Zarrehpavar (Danish Institute for Human Rights) explained: “The past year has been a difficult one for equality bodies. Economic downturn and the responses to this context have been accompanied by an increased demand on the services of equality bodies from those who have experienced discrimination. The independence and effectiveness of some equality bodies has been diminished by disproportionate budget cuts, by mergers with inappropriate entities and by political interference in appointments…Equinet believes that standards will contribute to securing the effectiveness and impact of equality bodies and to enabling these bodies to fully realise their potential at national level.”

Our Strategic Plan 2011-2014 suggested a need for standards for equality bodies and commited Equinet to exploring the development of such standards and to supporting action by the European Commission in this area.

This was further developed in the 2015-2018 Strategic Plan, which included a strand of work to support the development of standards for and in the work of equality bodies.

Working paper on developing standards for equality bodies

Overview of Standards – PDF Based on talks held within the Cluster on Standards for Equality Bodies (2015-2016), a working paper on developing standards for equality bodies was published.

This working paper combines a concern to include minimum basic standards alongside standards that would ensure the full potential of an equality body is achieved. It does so to ensure that standards recognise and:

  • Enable the particular role, capabilities, and potential of equality bodies.
  • Respond to the wider institutional architecture in which equality bodies are located.
  • Address the changed context for equality bodies and new trends and evolution in their establishment, mandates, and operation.

The working paper was launched in June 2016, in the presence of Commissioner Jourova and in the context of the Equinet conference ‘Strenghening the effectiveness of European Equal Treatment Legislation‘. Read our press release here.

Commissioner Věra Jourová receives Standards Paper from former Equinet Chair Evelyn Collins
Commissioner Věra Jourová receives Standards Paper from former Equinet Chair Evelyn Collins


Continued engagement on standards for equality bodies

Standards were given a particular focus in our 2017 Annual Report, and the idea of standards for equality bodies has been taken up by a number of other organisations, such as:

It has been used by members in a number of ways, and has already been translated into a wide variety of languages.

On 3 May 2017, Equinet organised a strategic meeting for its members to discuss further steps that could be taken to achieve the introduction and strengthening of standards for equality bodies. This was held in advance of the ECRI seminar on revising the GPR No. 2: Specialised bodies to combat racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism and intolerance at national level. We look forward with great interest to the revised version of GPR No.2.

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Executive Board

Equinet Executive Board 2015-2017

Equinet Executive Board 2015-2017 (taken Sep. 2017): P. Polak, E. Collins, K. Lykovardi, K. Pimiä, P. Charlier, S. Benichou, T. Šimonović Einwalter, S. Konstatzky (missing A. Blaszczak)
Equinet Executive Board 2015-2017 (taken Sep. 2017): P. Polak, E. Collins, K. Lykovardi, K. Pimiä, P. Charlier, S. Benichou, T. Šimonović Einwalter, S. Konstatzky (missing A. Blaszczak)

The Members of the Equinet Executive Board for the 2015-2017 period were:

  • Evelyn COLLINS, Chief Executive, Equality Commission for Northern Ireland, Northern Ireland
  • Sarah BENICHOU, Head of ‘Access to Rights and Discriminations’ Unit, Defender of Rights, France
  • Anna BŁASZCZAK, Deputy Director of the Department of Equal Treatment and Protection of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Human Rights Defender, Poland
  • Patrick CHARLIER, Co-Director, Unia (Interfederal Centre for Equal Opportunities), Belgium
  • Sandra KONSTATZKY, Deputy Director, Ombud for Equal Treatment, Austria
  • Kalliopi LYKOVARDI, Deputy Ombudsman for Equal Treatment, Greek Ombudsman, Greece
  • Kirsi PIMIÄ, Ombudswoman, Non-Discrimination Ombudsman, Finland
  • Petr POLAK, Head of the Division of Equal Treatment, Public Defender of Rights, Czech Republic
  • Tena ŠIMONOVIĆ EINWALTER, Deputy Ombudswoman, Office of the Ombudswoman, Croatia

Former Board Members for the 2015-2016 period:

  • Kosana BEKER, Assistant to the Commissioner for Protection of Equality, Commissioner for Protection of Equality, Serbia (resigned in December, 2016)
  • Elisabeth LIER HAUGSETH, Head of Law Enforcement Department, The Equality and Anti-Discrimination Ombud, Norway (resigned in October, 2016)
Equinet Executive Board 2015-2017 (taken Oct. 2015): K. Beker, P. Charlier, E. Collins, E. Lier Haugseth, S. Konstatzky, K. Lykovardi, P. Polak, A. Blaszczak (missing S. Benichou)
Equinet Executive Board 2015-2017 (taken Oct. 2015): K. Beker, P. Charlier, E. Collins, E. Lier Haugseth, S. Konstatzky, K. Lykovardi, P. Polak, A. Blaszczak (missing S. Benichou)
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Strategic Plans

Strategic Plan 2015-2018

Over the period of its first two strategic plans (2007-2010 and 2011-2014), Equinet – European Network of Equality Bodies grew from a membership of twenty to forty two equality bodies in thirty two countries. It has developed into a professional platform for cooperation, capacity building and peer support amongst equality bodies around issues of legal interpretation and implementation in practice of the EU equal treatment Directives and promotion of equality.

This third Strategic Plan, developed through a broad consultation process with its members and various stakeholders at the EU and international levels, will guide Equinet’s work from 2015 to 2018. The objective of this plan is for Equinet to enable equality bodies to further build capacity to deepen their independence and effectiveness, give voice to the experience, expertise, learning and insights from equality bodies and their work of implementing equal treatment legislation, and act as a hub that supports the information flows necessary to enable and empower the work of equality bodies.

Strategic Plan 2015-2018

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Executive Board

Equinet Executive Board 2013 – 2015

From left to right: Tena ŠIMONOVIĆ EINWALTER, Evelyn COLLINS, Michiel BONTE, Therese SPITERI, Néphèli YATROPOULOS, Sandra RIBEIRO, István HALLER, Mari-Liis SEPPER, Anna BŁASZCZAK
From left to right: Tena ŠIMONOVIĆ EINWALTER, Evelyn COLLINS, Michiel BONTE, Therese SPITERI, Néphèli YATROPOULOS, Sandra RIBEIRO, István HALLER, Mari-Liis SEPPER, Anna BŁASZCZAK
From left to right: Tena ŠIMONOVIĆ EINWALTER, Evelyn COLLINS, Michiel BONTE, Therese SPITERI, Néphèli YATROPOULOS, Sandra RIBEIRO, István HALLER, Mari-Liis SEPPER, Anna BŁASZCZAK



The Members of the Equinet Executive Board for the 2013-2015 period were:

Equinet’s Treasurer was Therese SPITERI, Manager at the National Commission for the Promotion of Equality in Malta. The Board also had a Board Advisor in Niall Crowley (independent expert on equality issues).

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Workplans and Annual Reports

Workplans and Annual Reports

Work Plans

The work plans present an overview of the main goals and targets for the years ahead, as well as the main activities, initiatives and other means of achieving those goals.

Work Plan 2019
Work Plan 2018
Work Plan 2017
Work Plan 2016
Work Plan 2015
Work Plan 2014
Work Plan 2013
Work Plan 2012
Work Plan 2011
Work Plan 2010
Work Plan 2009

Annual Reports

The reports showcase Equinet’s major achievements and outputs from the previous years. They present the initiatives undertaken by Equinet to ensure networking between, and capacity building of member organisations. The reports also contain relevant information on the achievements and progress made to strengthen the policy dialogue with EU partners and stakeholders, and to effectively support the work of national equality bodies.

2017

Equinet Highlights 2017

2015-2016

Equinet Highlights 2015 – 2016

2014-2015

Equinet Highlights 2014-2015

2013

Annual Report 2013 (EN)

2012

Annual Report 2012 (EN)Rapport Annuel 2012 (FR)

2011:

Annual Report 2011 (EN)Rapport Annuel 2011 (FR)

2010:

Annual Report 2010 (EN)Rapport Annuel 2010 (FR)

2009:

Annual Report 2009

To order hardcopies of the recent reports free of charge click here.

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Executive Board

Equinet Executive Board 2011 – 2013

[/The Members of the Equinet Executive Board for the 2011-2013 period were:

Equinet Executive Board 2011-2013
Equinet Executive Board 2011-2013

From left to right: Domenica Ghidei, Therese Spiteri, Csaba Ferenc Asztalos, Evelyn Collins, Julija Šartuch, Tena Šimonovic Einwalter, Jozef De Witte (Chair), Elke Lujansky-Lammer, and Néphèli Yatropoulos.