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The Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union: an opportunity to commit to the social advancement of the Spanish and European Roma population [editar]

10/07/2023
FSG Incidencia y Defensa de Derechos

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The Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union: an opportunity to commit to the social advancement of the Spanish and European Roma population

Spain takes upon the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, during the second semester of 2023, and under its leadership will contribute to defining the European political lines in areas such as the environment, employment, education, housing or the economy. Policies that will impact the lives of millions of people. 

During these months, and through multiple meetings in which European ministerial representatives will be involve, Spain will promote the work of the Council and will debate and apply EU laws that will be applied throughout the EU.

 

The Presidency of the EU allows the Member State that holds it to play a coordinating role and gives it the ability to establish priorities, for this reason the Spanish executive, which has declared that it will try to make progress on all fronts, has defined four priorities:

  • Reindustrialising the EU and guaranteeing its open strategic autonomy
  • Advancing in the green transition
  • Promoting greater social and economic justice
  • Strengthening European unity

From the Fundación Secretariado Gitano we have analysed the main political initiatives that will be promoted during these months of the presidency in order to achieve "greater social and economic justice". Here are the most prominent:

 

  • SOCIAL INCLUSION AND THE FIGHT AGAINST POVERTY

Social inclusion will be present in the Spanish Presidency through the strengthening of the European social shield that will define flexible and coherent models of income protection and the sharing of results of the inclusion itineraries that will allow the development of Recommendations on minimum income. In addition, the initiative for a Social Convergence Framework will be launched, which will introduce indicators to warn and correct possible social imbalances.

The Spanish Presidency has committed to working on the adoption of a Council Declaration to advance in the fight against poverty and to convert decent work into a pillar of inclusive and sustainable growth, prioritizing equality between women and men in the labour market and the employment of young people. It should be noted that in Spain 86% of the Roma population is in a situation of poverty or social exclusion and 46% is extremely poor with a monthly income of less than 310 euros.

 

  • HOUSING

The Spanish Presidency has committed to housing and urban development occupying an important place in European policies and will work to advance Council Conclusions on the Roma population that address ways to eradicate segregated settlements and put an end to slums. In a country like Spain where more than 18,000 Roma people continue to live in substandard housing and slums, the definition of a common European policy to eradicate this phenomenon would favour its achievement in the medium term.

  • EDUCATION

The Spanish Presidency will propose two Council Recommendations on improving the supply of digital skills in education and training and on key enabling factors for the success of digital education and training. The importance of these competences, together with vocational training, continuous training and education throughout life, appear in the European Year of Skills.

In addition, within this framework, work will be done for a greater integration of companies in the training system.

 

  • DISCRIMINATION

The Presidency will advance in the work of the proposals for Directives on the establishment of minimum standards for equal treatment bodies and will seek to unblock the proposal for a Directive that applies the principle of equal treatment regardless of religion or belief, disability , age or sexual orientation. Likewise, it will promote a debate on ways to effectively and definitively eradicate hateful behaviour in sport, as expressions that are incompatible with the values and principles of the European Union.

 

From the Fundación Secretariado Gitano we hope that the objectives defined by the Spanish Presidency are translated into concrete decisions that can be effectively implemented in our country. For this reason, during these months we will closely follow the negotiations and debates and we will analyse the legislative and political initiatives that result from the work of the Council.

We hope that they will lead the way in achieving a more social and inclusive Europe.


 To follow all the news of the work of the Spanish Presidency you can find out on the website of the Spanish Presidency and on social networks

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