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The Impact of Covid-19 Measures on Democracy, the Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights in the EU

23-04-2020

This Briefing was prepared by the Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs upon request of the LIBE committee Monitoring Group on Democracy, Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights. It focuses on the measures adopted by EU Member States to fight Covid-19 and their impact on democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights in the EU. The Policy Department has monitored such measures and examined their impact in relation to: state of emergency and exceptional powers, the functioning ...

This Briefing was prepared by the Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs upon request of the LIBE committee Monitoring Group on Democracy, Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights. It focuses on the measures adopted by EU Member States to fight Covid-19 and their impact on democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights in the EU. The Policy Department has monitored such measures and examined their impact in relation to: state of emergency and exceptional powers, the functioning of national parliaments and of the judiciary; freedom of movement; freedom of expression and of the media; freedom of assembly; privacy and data protection; asylum; prisons; discrimination and vulnerable groups; other issues of relevance for Art. 2 TEU. The monitoring exercise reveals a series of areas of possible concern for the EU and the European Parliament. This exercise is notably useful in preparation of the first annual inter-institutional monitoring exercise in the framework of the new European mechanism on the Rule of Law.

Commitments made at the hearing of Didier REYNDERS, Commissioner-designate - Justice

22-11-2019

The commissioner-designate, Didier Reynders, appeared before the European Parliament on 02 October 2019 to answer questions from MEPs in the Committees on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, the Committee on Legal Affairs and the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection. During the hearing, he made a number of commitments which are highlighted in this document. These commitments refer to his portfolio, as described in the mission letter sent to him by Ursula von der Leyen, ...

The commissioner-designate, Didier Reynders, appeared before the European Parliament on 02 October 2019 to answer questions from MEPs in the Committees on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, the Committee on Legal Affairs and the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection. During the hearing, he made a number of commitments which are highlighted in this document. These commitments refer to his portfolio, as described in the mission letter sent to him by Ursula von der Leyen, President-elect of the European Commission, including: Upholding the rule of law; and Justice and consumer protection.

Commitments made at the hearing of Věra JOUROVÁ, Vice-President-designate - Values and Transparency

22-11-2019

The Vice President-designate, Věra Jourová, appeared before the European Parliament on 07 October 2019 to answer questions from MEPs in the Committees on Constitutional affairs, Civil liberties, justice and home affairs, and Legal affairs. During the hearing, she made a number of commitments which are highlighted in this document. These commitments refer to her portfolio, as described in the mission letter sent to her by Ursula von der Leyen, President-elect of the European Commission, including: ...

The Vice President-designate, Věra Jourová, appeared before the European Parliament on 07 October 2019 to answer questions from MEPs in the Committees on Constitutional affairs, Civil liberties, justice and home affairs, and Legal affairs. During the hearing, she made a number of commitments which are highlighted in this document. These commitments refer to her portfolio, as described in the mission letter sent to her by Ursula von der Leyen, President-elect of the European Commission, including: á - Strengthening democracy and transparency; and - Upholding Europe’s values and rights.

Achievements of the Committee on Petitions during the 2014-2019 parliamentary term and challenges for the future

03-07-2019

During the 2014-19 parliamentary term the European Union and notably the European Parliament, through its dedicated Committee on Petitions (PETI), has continued to uphold the right of citizens to petition the EP to raise issues and concerns and to call for redress and action in areas of EU competence, by mobilising institutions and Member States both on issues at the centre of the political debate, and on ‘‘orphan’’ or ‘‘dormant’’ issues. With the aim of better serving EU citizens, the Committee ...

During the 2014-19 parliamentary term the European Union and notably the European Parliament, through its dedicated Committee on Petitions (PETI), has continued to uphold the right of citizens to petition the EP to raise issues and concerns and to call for redress and action in areas of EU competence, by mobilising institutions and Member States both on issues at the centre of the political debate, and on ‘‘orphan’’ or ‘‘dormant’’ issues. With the aim of better serving EU citizens, the Committee on Petitions has developed a Petitions Web Portal, adopted new and updated Guidelines, created a Petitions Network and a special Working Group on Child Welfare Issues. PETI continued to examine a high number of petitions raising issues in all areas of EU activity. In the 9th legislature, PETI could strengthen its achievements by exploring innovative ways to achieve effective solutions for the petitioners.

The protection of fundamental rights in the EU: European Parliament achievements during the 2014-2019 legislative term and challenges for the future

17-04-2019

In the years between 2014 and 2019, the EU has faced serious challenges related to the protection of fundamental rights within its territory, notably in connection to the Rule of Law (RoL) and democracy in some EU Member States. The Commission and the European Parliament (EP), led by the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE), have addressed these challenges by activating - for the first time since its introduction in the Treaties - the procedure foreseen in art. 7.1 TEU, respectively ...

In the years between 2014 and 2019, the EU has faced serious challenges related to the protection of fundamental rights within its territory, notably in connection to the Rule of Law (RoL) and democracy in some EU Member States. The Commission and the European Parliament (EP), led by the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE), have addressed these challenges by activating - for the first time since its introduction in the Treaties - the procedure foreseen in art. 7.1 TEU, respectively against Poland and against Hungary. The EP has also consolidated its former requests under the proposal for an EU mechanism on Democracy, the Rule of Law and Fundamental rights (EU DRF Pact). Important legislative dossiers on procedural rights were approved (presumption of innocence, safeguards for children in criminal proceedings, legal aid). While the EP continued to report annually on the situation of fundamental rights in the EU and on traditional issues of interest (among which minorities, Roma, anti-Semitism, right-wing extremism, prisons, media freedom, as well as follow up activities on mass surveillance and CIA), it has also addressed new issues, such as protection of whistle-blowers (a Commission proposal was issued following insistence of the EP), islamophobia, afrophobia and fundamental rights of intersex persons. The EP has also adopted resolutions on the situation in specific Member States, such as Malta, Slovakia, Romania, expressing Rule of Law concerns. Among the challenges that remain open for the next term are the art. 7 TEU procedures against Hungary and Poland, the strengthening of the protection of art. 2 TEU values including through the promotion of the EU DRF Pact, the EU accession to the ECHR, the enhancement of the EU and EP monitoring mechanisms, the adoption of pending files, including the Rule of Law conditionality for EU funds, the Rights and Values and Justice programmes, the equal treatment directive, the reform of the transparency regulation and, in the longer term; the reform of the Treaties.

Livre circulação de pessoas

01-03-2018

A liberdade de circulação e de residência das pessoas na UE constitui a pedra angular da cidadania da União, estabelecida pelo Tratado de Maastricht em 1992. A supressão gradual das fronteiras internas nos termos dos acordos de Schengen foi seguida da adoção da Diretiva 2004/38/CE relativa ao direito de os cidadãos da UE e os membros das suas famílias poderem circular e residir livremente na UE. Não obstante a importância deste direito, dez anos após o prazo de transposição da diretiva ainda persistem ...

A liberdade de circulação e de residência das pessoas na UE constitui a pedra angular da cidadania da União, estabelecida pelo Tratado de Maastricht em 1992. A supressão gradual das fronteiras internas nos termos dos acordos de Schengen foi seguida da adoção da Diretiva 2004/38/CE relativa ao direito de os cidadãos da UE e os membros das suas famílias poderem circular e residir livremente na UE. Não obstante a importância deste direito, dez anos após o prazo de transposição da diretiva ainda persistem obstáculos substanciais.

Proteção dos direitos fundamentais na UE

01-03-2018

A União Europeia funda-se nos valores do respeito pela dignidade humana, da liberdade, da democracia, da igualdade, do Estado de Direito e do respeito pelos direitos humanos, inclusive os direitos das pessoas pertencentes a minorias, tal como estabelecido no artigo 2.º do Tratado da União Europeia (TUE). Para garantir que estes valores são respeitados, o artigo 7.º do TUE prevê um mecanismo da UE para determinar a existência e, eventualmente, sancionar violações graves e persistentes dos valores ...

A União Europeia funda-se nos valores do respeito pela dignidade humana, da liberdade, da democracia, da igualdade, do Estado de Direito e do respeito pelos direitos humanos, inclusive os direitos das pessoas pertencentes a minorias, tal como estabelecido no artigo 2.º do Tratado da União Europeia (TUE). Para garantir que estes valores são respeitados, o artigo 7.º do TUE prevê um mecanismo da UE para determinar a existência e, eventualmente, sancionar violações graves e persistentes dos valores da UE por parte de um Estado-Membro, mecanismo esse que foi ativado recentemente pela primeira vez. A UE está também vinculada pela sua Carta dos Direitos Fundamentais, que estipula os direitos que devem ser respeitados, tanto pela União Europeia, como pelos Estados-Membros, na aplicação da legislação da UE. A União está ainda empenhada na adesão à Convenção Europeia para a Proteção dos Direitos do Homem e das Liberdades Fundamentais.

O Provedor de Justiça Europeu

01-10-2017

O Provedor de Justiça Europeu procede a inquéritos para esclarecer eventuais casos de má administração na atuação de instituições, organismos, gabinetes e agências da União Europeia, intervindo por iniciativa própria ou com base em queixas apresentadas por cidadãos da UE. É eleito pelo Parlamento Europeu para um mandato que tem a duração da legislatura.

O Provedor de Justiça Europeu procede a inquéritos para esclarecer eventuais casos de má administração na atuação de instituições, organismos, gabinetes e agências da União Europeia, intervindo por iniciativa própria ou com base em queixas apresentadas por cidadãos da UE. É eleito pelo Parlamento Europeu para um mandato que tem a duração da legislatura.

O direito de petição

01-10-2017

Desde a entrada em vigor do Tratado de Maastricht, qualquer cidadão da União Europeia tem o direito de apresentar uma petição ao Parlamento Europeu, sob a forma de uma queixa ou de um pedido, sobre questões que se inscrevam nos domínios de competência da União Europeia. As petições são analisadas pela Comissão das Petições do Parlamento Europeu, que toma decisões sobre a admissibilidade das petições e é responsável pelo respetivo tratamento.

Desde a entrada em vigor do Tratado de Maastricht, qualquer cidadão da União Europeia tem o direito de apresentar uma petição ao Parlamento Europeu, sob a forma de uma queixa ou de um pedido, sobre questões que se inscrevam nos domínios de competência da União Europeia. As petições são analisadas pela Comissão das Petições do Parlamento Europeu, que toma decisões sobre a admissibilidade das petições e é responsável pelo respetivo tratamento.

The European Accessibility Act

15-08-2016

TThis paper, produced by the Policy Department on Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs, looks into the Commission proposal for a European Accessibility Act. It briefly describes its contents, the Council discussions on the proposal, its Impact Assessment and the main points of contention, as well as the views of disability advocacy groups, as well as of the business and industry organisations, both on the act and on its articles. A series of suggestions and recommendations are proposed with ...

TThis paper, produced by the Policy Department on Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs, looks into the Commission proposal for a European Accessibility Act. It briefly describes its contents, the Council discussions on the proposal, its Impact Assessment and the main points of contention, as well as the views of disability advocacy groups, as well as of the business and industry organisations, both on the act and on its articles. A series of suggestions and recommendations are proposed with the objective of ensuring that the Act can effectively achieve its declared aims: implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by fostering the integration of disabled persons in society and guaranteeing equal access to goods and services.

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