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Eurofound and FRA collaboration prioritises social inclusion and employment rights

The Directors and senior staff of Eurofound and the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) met in Dublin today. It was an opportunity to review ongoing collaboration between the two agencies, as well as discuss their response to the war in Ukraine.

They reaffirmed their commitment to ensuring that their research informed policy responses to prioritise human dignity, non-discrimination, and improving living and working conditions throughout Europe.

Underpinning this commitment is their Collaboration Agreement and joint Action Plan for 2022. A core element of this is informing each other about the findings of their respective surveys. For Eurofound this includes the Living, Working and COVID-19 survey and the European Working Conditions Survey. For FRA this includes surveys on Roma; immigrants and descendants of immigrants; discrimination and hate crime against Jews; LGBTI groups, and violence against women.

The agencies cooperate on a wide range of issues. These include social rights, the rights of older and disabled people, the provision of social services, and digital inclusion.

The war in Ukraine is also now a pivotal new component of their cooperation.

Speaking at the conclusion of the meeting, Eurofound Executive Director Ivailo Kalfin said

'Improving the living and working conditions of people in Europe involves understanding the barriers that they may face in their everyday lives - from socioeconomic inequality to structural discrimination. This necessity is even more apparent with the war in Ukraine and the humanitarian crisis that has unfolded. Close collaboration between FRA and Eurofound is vital to ensure that we are reactive to these developments, and to expose and challenge structural inequality and discrimination.'

FRA Director Michael O’Flaherty said

The depth and scope of today’s discussions between FRA and Eurofound reinforce the strong bond that links the two agencies. It comes at an important time as FRA extends its work on civil and political rights and socioeconomic rights. Eurofound and FRA are united in their determination to improve people’s lives and protect human dignity across Europe, particularly in the context of the war in Ukraine and its human rights implications.'

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Image © Eurofound 2022. Left to right: Ursula Till-Tentschert, FRA Expert, Social Rights Sector, Equality, Roma and Social Rights Unit, Michael O’Flaherty, FRA Director, Maria Jepsen, Eurofound Deputy Director, Ivailo Kalfin, Eurofound Executive Director.

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