Non-Governmental Organisations

    SUMMER SESSION

    GENDER EQUALITY TRANSVERSAL GROUP
    CONF/TG/GEN(2009)SYN3

    Strasbourg, 1 September 2009

SYNOPSIS OF THE MEETING
HELD ON 23 JUNE 2009

    FOR THE ATTENTION OF THE MEMBERS OF THE GENDER EQUALITY TRANSVERSAL GROUP

    1. Opening of the meeting by Alain Mouchoux, Vice-Chair of the Conference of INGOs.

    2. Elections of Chair and Vice-Chair of the Gender Equality Transversal Group.
    Tellers appointed by the GETG: Heleen Jansen (European Association of Teachers - EAT) and Gilbert Nerson (International Council B'NAI B'RITH -ICBB).

    Elected Chair: Karin Nordmeyer (Zonta International - ZI), votes in favour 23/25
    Elected Vice-Chair : Christiaan Colpaert (European Union of Dentists – EUD),votes in favour 15/24

    3. Adoption of the Agenda

    4. Approval of the Synopsis of the meeting held on 24 April 2009 [CONF/TG/GEN(2009)SYN2], with an additional sentence: Anje Wiersinga (International Alliance of Women) is appointed to contribute in the name of the Transversal Group to the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) alternative report for the forthcoming conference on “Beijing + 15”. Thanks were expressed to the Rapporteur Vera John-Mikolajewski (University Women of Europe)

    5. Report from Vjosa Dobruna from “Kosovo Women's Network”, and Luljeta Vuniqi, Director of “Kosovar Gender Studies Center”, on the status of women in Kosovo with regard to
    • The involvement of women in post conflict democratic processes (UN Security Council Resolutions1325 and 1820; Resolution MEG-5 of the Council of Europe on the Roles of Women and Men in Conflict Prevention, Peace Building and Post-conflict Democratic Processes)
    • The fight against trafficking (Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking)

    The status of women had improved but not as well as expected. Effective mechanisms to address violence against women and trafficking were available but needed a better coordination. There was a need for new anti-trafficking strategies with regard to rehabilitation of the victims. Overall the global financial crisis had a negative impact on further democratic development of society. Advocacy and pressure on the government from outside to speed up the implementation of the respective laws would be helpful.

    6. Information by the Chair Karin Nordmeyer on the second meeting of the Ad Hoc Committee on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence (CAHVIO) in Strasbourg 25 -27 May 2009. Sophie Dimitroulias (Association of Women of Southern Europe - AFEM) and Irene Donadio (International Planned Parenthood Federation – European Network - IPPF-EN) were appointed members of a working group to contribute effectively to the process of drafting the text of the Convention. The working group could be enlarged after the Committee of Ministers final decision on the terms of reference.

    7. Follow up information by the Chair on activities since the last meeting of the committee.

    8. Information on the Council of Europe Gender Budgeting Conference in Athens by Gérard Greneron, Vice-President of the Conference of INGOs.
    He drew the attention to the handbook on “Gender budgeting: practical implementation”, prepared by Sheila Quinn, Directorate General of Human Rights and Legal Affairs, Council of Europe, in April 2009

    9. Exchange of views with Irma Ertman, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Finland to the Council of Europe. Under discussion:

      · “European Convention on the Exercise of Children's Rights” (CETS No.: 160)
      · “Council of Europe Platform on Children's Rights
      · The 3-year Council of Europe Programme “Building a Europe for and with children” based on the four Ps.: protection of children, prevention of violence, prosecution of criminals and participation of children, paying special attention to particularly vulnerable children.
      · The database on the child’s right
      · Case law of the European Court of Human Rights

    10. Information on
    a. The current public discussions on the Islamic scarf in France

      b. The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights from 1966 1
      and its Optional Protocol from 2008 2 in particular information on Art. 12 : “The right to health, including reproduction”- which recognises the right of everyone to “the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health".

        "This is an unadopted draft document.

Under no circumstances shall it be considered binding on the persons referred to therein.”.

    Cc. : President of the Conference of INGOs

      Members of the Standing Committee of the Conference of INGOs
      Secretary General of the Parliamentary Assembly
      Secretary General of the Congress
      Secretary to the Committee of Ministers
      Directors General
      Registrar of the European Court of Human Rights

          Acting Director of the Private Office of the acting Secretary General

      Director of External Relations
      Director of Strategic Planning
      Director of Communication
      Director a.i. of the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights

1 The document was adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1966 and is in force since 1976 – ratified by 160 Parties.

2 The Optional Protocol was adopted 10 December 2008 and it will enter into force when ratified by 10 Parties.