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Communication Material: Celebrating 10 Years of the Equinet Network

October 5th 2017

Since 2007, Equinet has been promoting equality in Europe by supporting and enabling the work of national equality bodies. It supports equality bodies to be independent and effective as valuable catalysts for more equal societies.

In 2017, Equinet celebrates its 10th Anniversary! We have grown from a project-based set-up of six members to become the recognised European Network of Equality Bodies, a membership organisation bringing together 46 equality bodies from 34 European countries.

As part of these celebrations, we would like to look at:

  • Equinet Past: Take a look back at the work that Equinet and its members have carried out over the past 10 years.
  • Equinet Present and Future: Identify opportunities and challenges within the Network at present, that should be taken on board as we develop into the future.
  • EU Developments: See how equality and anti-discrimination legislation and policy has developed during that time.

Press Release: Equinet - 10 years promoting equality in Europe

This press release highlights some of the main points relating to our 10th anniversary celebrations.

Conference: Together for an Equal Europe

On the 10th October, Equinet organised a conference entitled ‘Together for an Equal Europe’ to mark its 10th anniversary.

The conference brought together high-level speakers and guests from equality bodies, European institutions, international organisations, civil society, national governments and parliaments, academics; many of those with whom Equinet has worked over the years.

It took stock of the progress made and the current challenges in the field of equality and of the work of equality bodies in progressing equality and non-discrimination over the past decade. It created a forum for discussion and shared visions on the perspectives and challenges ahead for equality, particularly the work of national equality bodies in a shrinking space for equality and fundamental rights.

For further details, please check the conference webpage.


This Timeline allows us to look back over the past 10 years to get a flavour of some of the successes and main milestones of the Equinet Network, its members, and developments in equality and non-discrimination policy and legislation at EU level.

In Focus Brief - Equinet: A Network for the Watchdogs of Equality

This thematic publication summarises the work of Equinet throughout the years, including in particular how we have been working to strengthen national equality bodies.

In Focus Brief - Equinet
In Focus Brief - Equinet

Accessible Word version is available here


How equality bodies help victims of discrimination

In 2015, 1 in 5 Europeans reported experiencing discrimination or harassment.

Discrimination on the grounds of ethnic origin is regarded as the most widespread form of discrimination in the EU (64%), followed by discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation (58%), gender identity (56%), religion or belief (50%), disability (50%), age (42%) and gender (37%), according to the Eurobarometer on Discrimination 2015.

Equality bodies are on the front line in the work of promoting equality and combating discrimination. They can hear and decide cases of discrimination; provide assistance to victims of discrimination; research, survey and report on discrimination issues; promote good practice for equality; and contribute to an awareness of rights and a societal valuing of equality. This video shows some examples of how they do that.

Equinet and Equality Bodies: Promoting Equality in Europe

This video gives an internal perspective of the Network and shares the opinions of the following on how Equinet supports equality bodies to promote equal societies across Europe:

  • Mandana Zarrehparvar (Equinet Chair 2009-2011), Chief Consultant, Danish Institute for Human Rights
  • Evelyn Collins (Equinet Chair 2013-2017), Chief Executive, Equality Commission of Northern Ireland
  • Petr Polák (Equinet Board Member 2015-2017), Head of the Division of Equal Treatment, Public Defender of Rights, Czech Republic
  • Anne Gaspard, Equinet Executive Director

Working together for a fairer society

We work closely with valued partners who contribute to a more equal Europe on a daily basis. This video shares the opinions of key civil society actors on the vital role of equality bodies in promoting equality in Europe and the importance of cooperation with organisations such as their own:

  • Michael Privot, Director, European Network Against Racism (ENAR)
  • Evelyne Paradis, Executive Director, ILGA Europe, the European LGBTI organisation
  • Catherine Naughton, Director, European Disability Forum
  • Joanna Maycock, Secretary General, European Women’s Lobby