Abortion rights for women are enlarged in France. The new law passed at the end of January means women can have an abortion in the first twelve weeks without having to prove distress. In many other European countries reproductive rights of women are not so well taken care of. More than 2000 people gathered together in Brussels to protest against the new draft bill to restrict the abortion in Spain and demand access to abortion everywhere in Europe. The European Women´s Lobby want to thank all the participants who joined and expressed their solidarity with the women in Spain and Europe.
The European Women’s Lobby also calls for action to sign a petition against discrimination of sexual orientation and gender identity to counterbalance the extremist opposition to those rights in the EU. Follow the link for more information on these and other subjects. http://www.womenlobby.org/spip.php?page=courrier&id_courrier=408
The Council of Europe’s work benefits extensively from contacts and co-operation with the dynamic elements of society, as represented by NGOs. One of the main challenges currently facing the Organisation is to strengthen NGOs and civil society and to develop participatory democracy on a pan-European basis.
The Council of Europe’s relations with NGOs focus on the following:
I. Relations with international NGOs (INGOs): this can seen as the Council of Europe’s statutory relations with NGOs through the INGOs holding participatory status (which UWE has), known collectively as the Conference of INGOs of the Council of Europe. Through this status INGOs are now actively contributing to the decision-making process at the Council of Europe and to the implementation of its programmes, thus ensuring their relevance to the expectations of Europeans.
Tomorrow will be the start of the INGO conference of the International NGO’s in Strasbourg. Our Vice President Vera John Mikolajewski and I will join this week of negotions and discussions. The agenda is to be found following this link http://www.coe.int/T/NGO/Articles/OING_Calendrier_2014_1.asp. An important topic will be the Resolution dr. Anje Wiersinga will present as the chair of the Taskforce Gender based Violence as a Political Weapon. Will keep you posted.
2013 ended with an incredibly successful joint project of the European Women’s Lobby and the Council of Europe, as events around the project “Act against Rape! Use the Istanbul Convention” have been organized in almost all European countries (28) and gave visibility to the demands to sign the Istanbul Convention. Which as we wrote before was one of the projects our Vice President Marie José worked on for a long time; more info https://uweboard.wordpress.com/2013/11/22/write-to-your-authorities-urging-to-use-the-istanbul-convention.
Purpose of the actions is to highlight the need for improvements and discuss the taboos. The project will continue as not all European countries have been able to sign, ratify and implement this important Convention. In the Netherlands the government intends to ratify the convention mid 2014. One of the issues was the necessity to implement the Convention also in the Caribbean part of the Netherlands which needed more time to work on the necessary infrastructure.
The actions have made it clear once again that Violence against Women (VAW) is to be eliminated. Another milestone drawing attention to the Elimination of Violence against Women is the launch of the results in March of the European survey on VAW – done by the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA). The results will show a high rate of VAW in Europe and the necessity to work on the Elimination of Violence against Women.
Hoping to see you at the:
Meet and Greet in Amsterdam: 9th– 11th of May 2014
Starting on the 9th of May in the evening with a reception at the house of the President of the UWE as it is Europe Day, next day workshops on Council of Europe and European Union including the work at the EWL and hopefully an introduction to the work of the UWE Board for potential candidates. Invited are Cer’s, presidents of the NFA’s, potential candidates and other interest groups. The Dutch NFA from Amsterdam will dedicate the Sunday to cultural and friendship events.
Mind, we can only continue this program if at least 10 members participate. Already Ireland and the Netherlands said they would participate. Hope to see you all! If you start looking for flights, train trips this early the cost will be rather low! Staying with Dutch NFA members can be organized, let us know!! Interested? Keep an eye on the website and let me know if you are planning to come at Universitywomeneurope@gmail.com (don’t reply this mail that doesn’t work!!)
AGM in Bucharest, Romania: 4th – 7th of September 2014
The UWE conference 2014 will be dealing with challenges and demands on the education of the 21 century ending in proposals tackling these issues with the intention to use these insights in developing policies. We are looking for experts on early child education, adult learning, HR education and Diversity!! Also we are looking for assistance for the marketing and communication of this special event!!
Purpose Conference 2014 : Quality Education for all in EUROPE
1 Create a UWE vision on what high quality of education in the 21 century demands.
2 Enlarge the knowhow of the procedures EU and COE and the ways to participate in civil society (living together and Code of Good Practice of the COE) for UWE members and potential members.
The UWE Board:
Edith Lommerse, Marie José Jonczy,
Vera John-Mikolajewski, Auli Ojala
VERA JOHN-MIKOLAJEWSKI invites you to take part in the Council of Europe campaign
to get to know the European Convention on Human Rights.
It’s your turn to nurture human rights by clicking on the following link!
Thank you for your support