"The Directorate of Social Rights, Health and Environment was established by the Secretary General of the Council of Europe in January 2024 as a follow-up to the Council of Europe Summit in Reykjavík to advance social justice, good health and a sustainable environment for all.

Democratic stability and security depend on the full enjoyment of human rights by everyone. This includes social justice, health and a clean, healthy and sustainable environment. Addressing fundamental challenges for present and future generations is a priority for our Directorate.

We thus work on such issues as combatting extreme poverty and social exclusion and leverage mechanisms such as the European Social Charter and the Council of Europe Development Bank with a view to rebuilding social ties and trust in national institutions, and ultimately strengthening democratic resilience. We are building stronger and more effective protection systems to protect the environment, as well as to counter the impact of the triple planetary crisis of pollution, climate change and loss of biodiversity on human rights, democracy and the rule of law.

The Council of Europe has played a pioneering global role in developing standards in emerging and new policy areas. We have a strong track record in protecting social rights, public health and the environment through a number of unique instruments which form the basis of our action. Our Directorate is determined to make an effective contribution to addressing current and future challenges in our field."

Rafael A. Benitez, Director

We promote, develop and monitor the implementation of human rights and rule of law standards


Search | Share | Follow 


What's new?