Non-Governmental Organisations

Recommendation adopted on 1 October 2009

"Combating poverty"

The Conference of INGOs of the Council of Europe,

    - Aware of the fact that promoting civil, economic, social and cultural human rights is both a challenge and a commitment for society as a whole;

    - Bearing in mind the commitment of numerous INGOs to combating poverty and of the experience gained by their active members over many years of helping persons in poverty to assert their rights;

    - Noting the serious upheavals occasioned by the economic crisis and by the inevitable and profound changes that will follow it;

    - Considering that these upheavals will have negative effects on the most vulnerable members of the community and will increase both the scale and the seriousness of poverty;

    - Considering that the social exclusion of a part of the population is a threat to the cohesion of society as a whole;

    - Considering that only governments, adopting a concerted policy, can take the necessary measures to combat poverty;

    Wishes to make its contribution to the debate and to the framing of the short, medium and long-term policies and investment programmes that governments need to implement, as a matter of urgency, to conquer poverty in Europe;

Therefore recommends that the Committee of Ministers:

- implement the proposal of the Conference of INGOs to include Article 30 of the revised European Social Charter in its core provisions and urge member states, if they have not already done so, to accept this provision and/or ratify the revised Social Charter;

- adopt an action plan for the years 2011 – 2021 to offer guidance to member states, as part of a poverty eradication programme that would take account, inter alia, of the measures proposed above and ensure that the means are available to monitor its implementation.