On 25 April, the Ombudsman, together with the House of Human Rights, organised a conference to celebrate ten years of application of the Anti-Discrimination Act in Croatia. The conference brought together local communities and civil society organisations, as well as all the Ombuds institutions in Croatia.
Equality data is defined as any piece of information that is useful for the purposes of describing and analysing the state of equality. Across the EU, many Member States are improving their equality data to help policymakers combat discrimination and challenge prejudices. With the support of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights, the Subgroup on Equality Data developed an online compendium of nearly 40 practices from 15 countries on the collection and use of equality data. The compendium illustrates how the 11 guidelines on improving the collection and use of equality data can be put into practice.
Equinet joins the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly’s Rapporteur on Ombudsman institutions and the European Network of NHRIs (ENNHRI) and the Global Alliance of NHRIs in expressing concern and calling for guaranteeing the independence of the Polish equality body, the Commissioner for Human Rights.
In 2018 Ombudsman of the Republic of Latvia monitored all six hospitals in Latvia, where in-patient psychiatric treatment of children is provided. During these monitoring visits Ombudsman examined treatment and other conditions of children in these hospitals.
On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Office of the Commissioner for Administration and Human Rights (Ombudsman) of Cyprus organised an awareness campaign entitled “The Protection of Human Rights 70 years later”.
On 5 December 2018, the Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency (FADA) published the results of a survey on inadmissible questions at job interviews. The survey investigates the extent to which applicants are sensitised to the inadmissibility of questions regarding the characteristics protected under the General Act on Equal Treatment in job interviews, and whether they had ever faced such questions in the past. In addition, attitudes towards anonymised job application procedures were surveyed.
On the occasion of the Equinet board meeting in Vienna, the Austrian Ombud for Equal Treatment is hosting a side-event in the House of the European Union to discuss the links between the UN-Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and equality bodies.
16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is an international campaign starting on 25 November, the International Day to End Violence against Women. The members of the Gender Equality Working Group and the Project on Violence Against Women discussed ways in which Equinet could be involved in this initative. The members decided to launch a social media campaign that will highlight good practices from different equality bodies on ways to tackle violence against women.
As the UK’s departure from the European Union approaches, the British Government is preparing to take on the new responsibility of trade negotiations. The Trade Bill currently passing through the British Parliament is laying the groundwork for this. Civil society has called for the inclusion of Human Rights and Democracy clauses that are at least equal to the EU’s standards, and others emphasise that this is also an opportunity to introduce higher standards.
On 29th October 2018, the Albanian Commissioner for Protection from Discrimination organized the Third Regional Conference of Equality Bodies, by topic “Independence of Equality Bodies”, at the Palace of Brigades, in Tirana, Albania. The Conference was partly financially supported by the OSCE.