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EAPN/EP joint hosted seminar on social standards

Building a European Social Standards Union – what role for the European Semester?

Aim: To see how progress can be made on social rights, social standards and poverty reduction, through the main EU coordination instrument – the European Semester – in the context of 1 in 4 of the population (119 million people) still at risk of poverty and social exclusion in the EU.

Key speakers:

  • Maria João Rodrigues, MEP S&D Group, Vice-Chair S&D, in charge of Economics & Social Policies (rapporteur of own initiative report on the Social Pillar) (confirmed)
  • Michael Mackey, Board of EAPN Ireland and person with direct experience of poverty (confirmed)
  • Yana Toom, MEP ALDE, Rapporteur on the European Semester, Employment and Social Affairs committee (confirmed)
  • Agnes Jongerius, MEP S&D Group, Vice-Chair of Employment and Social Affairs committee
  • Barbara Kauffmann, Director Employment & Social Governance, European Commission (confirmed)
  • Rait Kuuse, Deputy Secretary General on Social Policy, Estonian Ministry for Social Affairs (confirmed)
  • Paul Ginnell, Co-Chair of EAPN EU Inclusion Strategies Group/EAPN IE (confirmed)
  • Heather Roy, Secretary General, Eurodiaconia (confirmed)


It comes at a timely moment, following President Juncker’s State of the Union address, calling for a “European Union of Social Standards”, the Inter-Institutional Proclamation on the European Pillar of Social Rights, and the recent adoption of the 2018 Annual Growth Survey. The key questions that will be discussed are: How well is the European Semester performing on social rights and poverty reduction? How will the European Pillar of Social Rights be mainstreamed? What changes should be made to transform the Semester into a balanced economic and social instrument? How will grass-root actors, including people experiencing poverty, be involved?

The seminar will open with an exchange of views between stakeholders and the European Parliament, assessing the current performance of the Semester, including presenting EAPN’s 2017 Assessment of the National Reform Programmes: Social Rights or Social Plight? The second panel will involve an exchange between the European Parliament, European Commission, and Council of the EU on the way forward, with an active debate with the audience.

With Spanish - English interpretation!


7 Dec 2017 @ 09:00 am

7 Dec 2017 @ 01:00 pm

Duration: 4 hours


European Parliament

Rue Wiertz 60



Organised by


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