Silvia Ellena

Non-discrimination 12-05-2022

UK, Romania lose ground on LGBTI rights despite overall progress in Europe

LGBTI rights are slowly improving across Europe, but “big gaps” persist with a number of countries slipping down the ladder, according to a new ranking published by ILGA-Europe on Thursday (12 May).
Global Europe 10-05-2022

EU urges ‘not to give up on Syria’ amid Russia’s war on Ukraine

The Syrian humanitarian crisis remains among the EU’s top priorities, the bloc's chief diplomat, Josep Borrell, said at the sixth pledging conference for the war-torn Middle-Eastern country in Brussels on Tuesday (10 May).
Global Europe 09-05-2022

Palestine refugee agency could ‘implode’, UN warns

The collapse of the international agency responsible for Palestinian refugees due to chronic underfunding by UN countries could lead to unpredictable consequences in an already unstable region, experts and officials warn.
Global Europe 05-05-2022

MEPs condemn rape as war weapon, call for refugees’ access to abortion

EU lawmakers condemned the use of rape as a war tactic in Ukraine and called on the EU to ensure women refugees can access contraception pills and abortion across the bloc, in a resolution adopted on Thursday (5 May).

The Scottish take on participatory budgeting

In 2017, Scottish councils agreed to spend 1% of their budgets through participatory budgeting (PB). But how does the process work in Scotland and what are the obstacles authorities and communities face when they carry it out? As part of...
Europe's East 26-04-2022

Commission plans to upgrade EU judicial agency to protect evidence of war crimes

The European Commission has proposed reinforcing the mandate of Eurojust, the EU judicial agency, to facilitate the collection and protection of evidence of war crimes in Ukraine. 
Economy & Jobs 22-04-2022

Ukraine’s reconstruction will require sums ‘beyond imagination’, says EIB head

With the EU’s plan for Ukraine’s recovery in the making, the president of the European Investment Bank (EIB) Werner Hoyer warned that the country’s reconstruction will require huge investments from both public budgets and private capital.
Europe's East 20-04-2022

MEPs, Ukraine representatives call for oil embargo and broader sanctions

EU sanctions have failed to deter Russia, MEPs of the foreign affairs committee said on Wednesday (20 April). They asked the EU and member states to impose an immediate oil embargo on Russia and give financial assistance to Ukraine.
Non-discrimination 14-04-2022

Faced with discrimination, Ukrainian Roma refugees are going home

After facing discrimination and being denied humanitarian aid in Hungary, many Roma refugees fleeing Ukraine head back to their war-torn country to reunite with their families, despite the risks, activists say.
Non-discrimination 08-04-2022

Far-right MEPs: EU should focus on Ukrainian refugees, not Romani

Far-right lawmakers in the European Parliament urged the EU to focus on Ukrainian refugees instead of discussing discrimination against Romani people during a debate ahead of International Romani Day (8 April).

Should European citizens dictate the bloc’s budget?

MEPs and experts propose to scale up a city-level tool allowing citizens to decide how to spend a part of the municipal resources and let Europeans shape the EU budget expenditure.

Weak participatory tools hinder citizens’ attempts to shape EU policies

The EU’s attempts to encourage citizens’ engagement through participatory tools has made little impact due to the lack of information and clear follow-up, experts say.

Politicians ready to hear citizens’ ideas but roles need to be clearly defined

Giving citizens a say in decision-making beyond elections can help the leadership make better decisions, but sharing power requires a clear division of roles, politicians and experts have said. Citizen participation has increased rapidly in recent years and at all...
Europe's East 25-03-2022

UN: Over 6.5 million Ukrainians displaced after one month of war

More than 6.5 million people are currently displaced inside Ukraine while 3.7 million have fled the country since the Russian invasion started one month ago, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said on Friday (25 March).
Economy & Jobs 14-03-2022

Member states end 10-year deadlock on EU’s plan for women’s quota on corporate boards

EU employment and social affairs ministers have adopted a general approach on the directive to boost gender equality on corporate boards, ending a decade-long stalemate and paving the way for final negotiations between the European Parliament and the 27 member states in the Council.

Terrorism attacks, deaths likely to spike amid Russia-Ukraine war

Despite a downward trend in terrorism across Europe in the past decade, attacks and deaths could increase as the Ukrainian conflict intensifies, according to a report published by the Institute of Economics and Peace (IEP) on Wednesday (2 March).

The Dutch and participatory budgeting: citizens have their say

Out of every region in the word, cities in Europe engage in the largest share of participatory budgeting, a process that allows citizens to weigh in on municipal budget expenditure and propose initiatives for their cities or neighborhoods. City leaders...
Economy & Jobs 23-02-2022

EU sets out plans to make firms accountable for human rights violations

EU commissioners Thierry Breton and Didier Reynders presented the Commission's proposal for a corporate sustainability due diligence directive in Brussels on 23 February, arguing that its mix of due diligence processes, public oversight, and civil liability measures would drive more sustainable trade.

Poland urged to adopt law overhauling disciplinary chamber ‘soon’

Despite persisting concerns on the rule of law in Poland, the EU executive sees the country's plan to scrap its disciplinary chamber for judges as a “positive step”, but urges to adopt the law "soon."
Economy & Jobs 22-02-2022

LEAK: EU due diligence law to apply only to 1% of European companies

The EU's due diligence law aimed at making businesses accountable for human rights violations and environmental harm throughout their value chain will only cover 1% of EU companies, according to a draft of the proposal seen by EURACTIV.
Europe's East 16-02-2022

EU: Russia must choose war or diplomacy in Ukraine

While continuing negotiations and exploring all diplomatic routes, should Russia choose the path of war, the EU is prepared said the heads of the EU institutions during Wednesday's (16 February) plenary debate in European Parliament.
Non-discrimination 10-02-2022

Roma inclusion set back as several EU countries delay national strategies

Several European countries are lagging behind on their strategies to tackle discrimination and inequalities faced by Roma, casting doubts they will be able to reach already “unambitious” targets, experts warn.
Economy & Jobs 08-02-2022

Company coalition calls for robust human rights due diligence laws

With EU legislation on mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence to be proposed by the EU Commission in February, a cross-sectoral coalition of EU companies have called for it to adopt a risk-based approach and apply to all companies operating in Europe.
Non-discrimination 07-02-2022

EU countries split over Commission’s plan to give parents cross-border rights

The European executive is pushing for the recognition of parenthood in one country to result in bloc-wide recognition of familial ties, but the initiative could create a rift across the bloc due to the inclusion of rainbow families.