European Social Cohesion Platform (PECS)
The Platform aims to sustain and underpin the Secretary General’s reform process in this field by:
- promoting equal and effective enjoyment of social rights;
- ensuring that a social cohesion perspective is mainstreamed in the activities of all relevant committees and bodies of the Organisation, through the sharing of good practices;
- examining new trends and challenges.
The Platform was created as an ad hoc committee to respond to the request of several member States of the Council of Europe to create an intergovernmental structure to accompany the efforts of integration of the social aspects in the Council of Europe activities. It is open to all member States, institutions and committees of the Council of Europe, international institutions and other relevant stakeholders.
The Platform has a renewed two-year mandate from 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2021 and is instructed to:
- ensure the mainstreaming of social cohesion throughout the Council of Europe by further developing the concept, by contributing to impact assessments of the various activities in the different sectors with regard to achieving social cohesion, including the relevant activities aimed at building inclusive societies, and by promoting specific actions which contribute to social cohesion;
- foster the exchange of good practices and innovative approaches in the field of social cohesion among member States, as well as with relevant international organisations and other stakeholders; promote dialogue with the European Union, the United Nations and other international organisations, with a view to identifying opportunities for co-operation in the field of social cohesion;
- examine new trends in and challenges to social cohesion;
- hold an exchange of views annually in order to evaluate its activities and advise the Committee of Ministers and the Secretary General on future priorities in its sector, including possible new activities and those that might be discontinued.
The platform will work in specific areas such as eradication of child poverty, digitalisation and IT developments, protection and integration of migrants and refugees, social and health protection, in particular combating poverty and exclusion which may foster violent radicalisation, and the access of vulnerable groups, persons with disabilities and young people to social rights, while including a human dignity and anti-discrimination perspective in this work.
The Platform take due account of gender and children’s rights perspectives and to promoting and protecting rights of persons with disabilities in the performance of its tasks.