RLS co-signs open letter on the Mandate and Work of the EU Coordinator on Anti-Racism

Refugee Legal Support is a co-signatory to this statement.





Strong political engagement from European Union Executive and Member States’ political leadership will lead to concrete initiatives that will help deliver racial justice in Europe. The new EU Coordinator on Anti-Racism should be leading all the work on the topic within the European Commission, ensuring the meaningful participation of civil society and other stakeholders and engage with national and local levels. The creation of this new role is an important development that can lead to the successful implementation of the Anti-Racism Action Plan (ARAP) [see civil society Open Letter to Commission on the ARAP].


A. A clear mandate and roadmap for the EU Coordinator on Anti-Racism

The Coordinator and their team (hereafter, the Coordinator) should be responsible for implementing the ARAP. More specifically, the following elements should be part of the Coordinator’s mandate:


  1. National Action Plans against Racism (NAPAR) - The Coordinator should actively work with the European Commission’s subgroup on NAPAR to develop common principles in 2021 and to support Member States to meet their reporting obligations in 2022 including with the meaningful involvement of national civil society organisations. A Council Recommendation should be adopted to strengthen this framework.

  2. Mainstreaming of racial equality - The Coordinator should be the primary contact point for mainstreaming racial justice in the different Directorates-General with the Task Force on Equality supporting their work.

  3. Support to anti-racism civil society and human rights defenders - The Coordinator should closely monitor the situation of anti-racist human rights defenders on the ground in the Member States and ensure support from the political leadership for relevant civil society and human rights defenders.


B. A constant and participatory body for civil society organisations

The success of the Coordinator’s work will be limited if it is not supported by a permanent body facilitating structured dialogue with civil society organisations led by racialised groups and organisations working on issues related to racial justice and equality. This body would be responsible for the bi-annual meetings proposed in the ARAP and regular meetings with civil society organisations and other groups. The body could also facilitate regular contact and meaningful involvement in policy processes, especially through linking experts and groups with various Directorates-General to ensure knowledge sharing, training and mainstreaming.


C. Coherent organisational structure on racial equality with additional resources

The appointment of the Coordinator is an opportunity for the EU to implement an internal restructuring that will lead to coherence between policy aims and organisational structure. This will be key if the EU intends to tackle structural racism and mainstream racial justice across all policies areas and for all racialised groups, including those at the intersections of different grounds of discrimination. An organisational restructuring will also lead to better coordination, decision-making and monitoring of progress. Additional financial resources should be allocated to work on racial equality, including for the Coordinator and for their work with civil society organisations.


Signatories


1. European Network against Racism (ENAR)

2. Equinox Initiative for Racial Justice

3. European Roma Grassroots Organisations Network (ERGO)

4. Institute Circle

5. NGO RomanoNet

6. Migrant Tales

7. Forum of European Muslim Youth and Student Organisations

8. Greek Forum of Migrants

9. Trans United Europe

10. Roma Active Albania

11. Changemakers Lab

12. European Network of Women of African Descent

13. Public Institution Roma Community Centre

14. European Youth Forum

15. AO Public Association of Roma women and Girls from Moldova “Moldsolidaritate”

16. KISA - Action for Equality, Support, Antiracism

17. Velferdsalliansen EAPN Norway

18. Roma Association Utrecht

19. Instituto de Asuntos Culturales, España

20. Roma advocacy and research centre Skalica, Slovakia

21. In IUSTITIA

22. Stichting Ocan

23. Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM)

24. Refugee Legal Support (RLS)

25. The Czech Helsinki Committee

26. HumanRights360

27. Büro zur Umsetzung von Gleichbehandlung e.V. (BUG)

28. Movimento SOS Racismo

29. Pavee Point Traveller & Roma Centre

30. International Federation of Resistance Fighters (FIR)

31. Centre for Peace Studies

32. Regional Roma Educational Youth Association - RROMA

33. Paveepoint Traveller and Roma centre

34. ADVANCING TOGETHER

35. International Roma Women Network Phenjalipr

36. Povod Institute

37. Roma and Travellers Mediation Center (Centre de Médiation des Gens du Voyage et

des Roms)

38. Een Andere Joodse Stem

39. Àltera

40. Minderhedenforum vzw

41. Fair Trials

42. BIBI AMKA Woman wake up

43. Center for Migration, Gender, and Justice

44. ASOCIACIÓN NACIONAL PRESENCIA GITANA

45. European Network on Religion and Belief

46. Latvian Human Rights Committee

47. Central Council of German Sinti and Roma

48. Collective Against Islamophobia in Belgium (CCIB)

49. SIEMPRE - Latin American Women and Girls Networking

50. Federation of Roma Associations in Catalonia - FAGiC - FAGiC

51. Waterford Integration Services

52. Unge for Menneskerettigheder

53. Asoc. Nacional Presencia Gitana

54. "ANTIGONE" - Information and Documentation Centre on Racism, Ecology, Peace and Non Violence

55. Balkan LGBTQIA

56. Africa Solidarity Centre Ireland

57. Asociación Musulmana por los Derechos Humanos (AMDEH)

58. Pan African Movement for Justice

59. Implementation Team of the International Decade for People of African Descent-Spain

60. Africa-Europe Diaspora Development Platform

61. European Anti-Poverty Network

62. Churches´Commission for Migrants in Europe CCME

63. Africa Solidarity Centre CLG

64. Anti-Racist Forum ry

65. Center for Intersectional Justice

66. Advocacy and Human Rights Centre

67. Network for Children’s Rights

68. #DiasporaVote!

69. Romaversitas Foundation

70. The Citizens’ Association for the Promotion of Roma Education “Otaharin”

71. Integro Association

72. Derbyshire Gypsy Liaison Group

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