Implementation issues

AuthorSabatauskait?, Birut?
8.1 Dissemination of informatio n, dialogue with NGOs an d between social
a) Dissemination of information about legal protection against discrimination (Article
10 Directive 2000/43 and Article 12 Directive 2000/78)
A number of awa reness-raising initiatives have been implemented, mostly by the Offic e
of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson and/or non-governmental organisations, to
disseminate information about legal protection from discrimination.
The Ombudsperson’s website and Fac ebook page are being updated on a regular basis, a
number of awareness-raising campaigns hav e been organised, and almost all the
decisions of the Ombudsperson are being uploaded online. The Facebook page is used
not only for communication, but for holding consultations on discrimination. The
implementation of recommendations made by the Ombudsperson afte r investigations of
complaints can be observed by the public.
The Minist ry of Social Affairs and Labour initiated a video-based campaign in 2019, and
the Ombudsperson introduced a new Wings o f Equal Opportunities’ standard, allowing
different employers to self-evalua te their progress in the field of equal opportunities.
The worrying trend is that many promotional activities have to be carried out without
funding from the state budget. In 2019, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial
Discrimination therefore recommended in its concluding observations ‘that the State
party allocate sufficient funding to the Office of the Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson
so that it can take up its preventive and education competences.
Initiatives are often also implemented by civil society organisations, mostly without
funding from the state budget.
Two non-gov ernmental organisations are involv ed in awa reness-raising activities funded
through th e Action Plan for the Promot ion of Non-discrimination 2017-2019, which has
been extended to 2020.
b) Measures to encourag e dialogue with NGOs with a view to promoting the principle
of equal treatment (Article 12 Directive 2000/43 and Article 14 Directive 2000/78)
Most of the initiatives aimed at fostering dialogue with NGOs in the past were taken by
the Ombudsperson. In practice, the Ombudsperson is involved in various projects
organised in cooperation with NGOs to implement national anti-discrimination measures.
For example, the Human Rights Monitoring Institute present ed a training course for
employers on non-discrimination and equal opportunities in 2019. Awareness raising,
educational activities and research are condu cted by the Ombudsp erson or in partnersh ip
and cooperation with other institutions and non-governmental organisations. One must
take into account that the national NGO scene is r ather fragmented, an d the Government
does not take NGOs as seriously as part ners. NGOs operate on very limited human an d
financial resources, and there i s no government policy on the development of this sector.
There are no N GOs that specialise only in anti-discrimination work. Ther e are only a few
NGOs that deal with human rights (and non-discrimination is only one field of their
activities), and there are organisations that wo rk on particular grounds (women’s rights,
rights of people with disabilities, LGBT rights, etc.), but there are almost no ethnic-
minority NGOs working on lobbying or policy making in the sphere of equal opportuniti es.

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