As the public health crisis disproportionately affected the most vulnerable and increased pre-existing inequalities, the cooperation between the EU and the Council of Europe in the promotion of tolerance and diversity remains more than ever important. In this context and as we mark ‘Zero Discrimination Day’, the EU plans adopt its new European Disability Strategy for 2021-2030.
The coronavirus outbreak has demanded a redirection of resources. Many NGOs and civil society organisations around the world have been fundamental to ensure the protection of people, communities, environment and culture. “On World NGO Day, we pay tribute to their engagement, the impact of which should not be underestimated or taken for granted” stated EU High Representative Josep Borrell.
On 15 January 2021, the EU Delegation to the Council of Europe co-hosted a hybrid roundtable event on soft law in the 21st century, in cooperation with the Permanent Representation of Switzerland to the Council of Europe. The event consisted of two panel discussions focusing respectively on the concept of soft law and the opportunities and challenges arising from soft law against the background of human rights, democracy and the rule of law.