The international conference “Equality bodies: new standards, new challenges” marked the 10th anniversary and presented the main achievements of the Equality Council throughout a decade of its activity in the Republic of Moldova. The event brought to discussion the recent developments and standards for promoting equality, diversity, and non-discrimination in the Republic of Moldova and in Europe, but also the challenges to be addressed in the future.
"Today marks the 10th anniversary of the Equality Council. As in the other European countries, in Moldova the right to equality is recognized and promoted in the context of many international instruments and in accordance with the national legislation. It is necessary to mobilize everyone in the way to change the culture and perception of society, to be able to respect all citizens, regardless of their social or cultural options. We must be a united, engaged, and responsible society", stated Dorin RECEAN, Prime-Minister of the Republic of Moldova.
The conference also offered a platform for discussion for participants - national and international experts, representatives of equality bodies, state, and non-state actors active in the field of combating discrimination about the functioning of the anti-discrimination redress mechanisms in the Republic of Moldova, and possibilities to improve relating responses in line with European and international standards in future.
"The European Union attaches great importance to the value of equality and the right to non-discrimination. Since its inception, the Equality Council has become an established institution that is trusted by the Moldovan people to handle any allegations of discrimination. Moldova has all reasons to be proud of you”, mentioned Jānis Mažeiks, Ambassador of the European Union Delegation to the Republic of Moldova
“Through the Council of Europe Action Plan for the Republic of Moldova and more specifically European Union/Council of Europe co-operation projects we established a fruitful cooperation with many national stakeholders and progressed in the field of promoting equality, bringing forward reforms and reinforcing non-judicial redress mechanisms, for better protection of victims of discrimination and for all citizens of the Republic of Moldova.”, said Giulia RE, Head a.i. of the Council of Europe Office in Chisinau.
“Only in a state where human rights are protected and violations or attacks on human rights are sanctioned, we can have a society where everyone can realize their potential, no matter what language they speak, what ethnicity they are, which political party they prefer, no matter their religion or who they love”, highlighted Mihail POPȘOI, Vicepresident of the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova.
“In these 10 years, the Equality Council has managed to become an institution with a name and reputation not only in the country, but also at the regional and at the European level. Through our work, perseverance, and jurisprudence, we have managed to become plenipotentiary members of the Equinet – the European Network of Equality Bodies. Thus, since 2018, Moldova, along with other European Union countries, is participating in the development of European standards on non-discrimination", stated Ian FELDMAN, President of the Equality Council of the Republic of Moldova
In the result of discussions and as concluding remarks, the importance of continuing and increasing cooperation and exchanges among all relevant actors was highlighted, for the ultimate goal of a better protection of victims of discrimination, especially those from vulnerable groups in the Republic of Moldova.
This event was organised in cooperation with the Equality Council, in the framework of the project “Combating discrimination, hate speech and hate crimes in the Republic of Moldova”, part of the joint European Union and Council of Europe programme “Partnership for Good Governance,” co-funded by the European Union and the Council of Europe, and implemented by the Council of Europe.