Task Force on Equality


Parliamentary question

Authors: Katrin Langensiepen (Verts/ALE), Giorgos Georgiou (GUE/NGL), Alexis Georgoulis (GUE/NGL), Brando Benifei (S&D), Chiara Gemma (NI), Marianne Vind (S&D), Milan Brglez (S&D), Ivan Štefanec (PPE), Chrysoula Zacharopoulou (Renew), Atidzhe Alieva-Veli (Renew), Loucas Fourlas (PPE), Tilly Metz (Verts/ALE), José Gusmão (GUE/NGL), Marisa Matias (GUE/NGL), Isabel Carvalhais (S&D), Dragoș Pîslaru (Renew), Alex Agius (S&D), Rosa Estaràs (PPE), Pascal Durand (Renew), Kim Van Sparrentak (Verts/ALE), Jarosław Duda (PPE), Samira Rafaela (Renew), Younous Omarjee (GUE/NGL), Eva Kaili (S&D), Stelios Kympouropoulos (PPE), Maite Pagazaurtundúa (Renew), Cindy Franssen (PPE), Benoît Lutgen (PPE), Estrella Durá (S&D), Alicia Homs (S&D), Abir Al-Sahlani (Renew), Maria Walsh (PPE), Tanja Fajon (S&D), Radka Maxová (Renew)

According to Commission President von der Leyen’s mission letter to Commissioner for Equality Helena Dalli ‘a Task Force composed of experts from the Commission services will support you in your work’. This Task Force is composed of representatives of all Commission services and the European External Action Service to ensure the adequate mainstreaming of equality in all relevant policies proposed by the Commission.

On 20 November 2019, a message on social media came to our attention in which Commissioner Dalli announced the first meeting of the Equality Task Force. However, we do not know what the outcomes of that first meeting were or if the task force has ever met again, as there is no information on the Commission website. Therefore, we would like to have an answer to the following questions:

1. Does the Commission plan to publish a web page with all of the relevant information about the Equality Task Force, including, but not limited to, its members, working methods, work plan and the minutes of the meetings held so far? If so, when will this be done?

2. Does the Commission aim to invite civil society organisations working on equality to participate and contribute to the work of this task force?

Answer by the European Commission

Author: Helena Dalli, Commissioner on Equality.

Building a Union of Equality is one of the major priorities of the Commission, reflected in the President’s decision to appoint the first ever Commissioner for Equality. The Task Force on Equality, created to support the Commissioner for Equality in her daily work and chaired by the Deputy Secretary-General in charge of policy coordination , is a network of representatives from all services of the Commission and the European External Action Service. Equality coordinators appointed in each Directorate-General are key drivers of this network and ensure the interface between their Directorate-General and the Secretariat of the Task Force placed in the Secretariat-General of the Commission.

The key objective of the Task Force is to step up the Commission’s work on inclusion and equality irrespective of sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation including through a reinforced cooperation within Commission’s services. It has a key role in ensuring that equality considerations are mainstreamed into EU policies, legislation and funding programmes. The Task Force meets on a regular basis in different configurations and is in constant contact with the Cabinet of the Commissioner for Equality. 

The Commission is committed to reach out and engage with civil society organisations throughout on policy design, implementation and review. Participation and dialogue with organisations promoting equality and relaying experience from the ground is a tool for equality mainstreaming in its own right.

Equality mainstreaming tools and other material of relevance to the Task Force are shared internally within the Commission. Nonetheless, the Task Force does not yet publish information on Europa website but intends to do so in the coming months.

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