Work and Strategic Plans

Equinet in 2024

In 2023, Equinet played a key role in advancing negotiations around the proposed legislation on Standards for Equality Bodies. In 2024, we'll continue to work with our partners and will pursue and establish new and strong relationships, advocating for Equality Bodies and furnishing evidence to EU legislators of the need for strong standards and ways to monitor compliance. We'll focus on capacity-building, analyse past EU equality strategiesto gain valuable insights for future policy development, with a particular focus on LGBTIQ equality and disparities in Roma health equality.

Equinet will also continue to explore new and trending topics, supporting Equality Bodies in implementing the Artificial Intelligence Act, ensuring their involvement in AI regulation, and promoting inclusive and equitable climate change responses.

In looking into developing equality law and Equality Bodies’ role, Equinet will promote and support Equality Bodies in submitting expert opinions to courts, developing accessibility standards, advocating for inclusive design, and addressing barriers for older persons and those with disabilities. We'll explore situation testing methodologies as well as the role of sports in fighting discrimination.

This program builds on our past work to empower Equality Bodies’ staff and help our members be champions of equality. We aim for a future with strong European legislation to support and strengthen Equality Bodies, guided by our values of respect, equality, and justice. Together, we can achieve equality for all and a better future for generations to come.
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Strategic Plan 2023-2026

Equinet was created by and for Equality Bodies. Equinet work towards achieving equality and ensuring non-discrimination for everyone in all aspects of their lives. As a strong, resilient and innovative network, Equinet contributes to the achievement of substantive equality by addressing structural and institutional barriers and raising awareness on, understanding and appreciation of equality as a shared value. In this way, Equinet seeks to empower everyone to fully participate in society and have equal access to existing opportunities in Europe. 

During the coming strategic period, Equinet will do that by focusing on the following on areas of change and long-term objectives:

A. Strengthen and support Equality Bodies to achieve equality for all 

1. Strengthen Equality Bodies as the cornerstones of national and equality infrastructures 
2. Support Equality Bodies through knowledge, capacity-building and skills sharing for the enforcement of their mandate 

B. Act as an expert voice of Equality Bodies in Europe on equality and non-discrimination 
3. Advance the equality agenda in Europe through strategic engagement and communication 
4. Maintain Equinet’s position as a research and knowledge hub drawing on Equality Bodies’ experience of equality and non-discrimination 

C. Maintain and improve Equinet’s capacity as a strong, resilient, and innovative Network 
5. Ensure an enriching membership experience in Equinet, by tailoring activities and engaging all members 
6. Develop and sustain Equinet’s resources and accountability to better respond to members’ needs 
Strategic Plan 2023-26

Equinet in 2023

In 2023, Equinet will have a very strong focus on advocating for standards for Equality Bodies and furnishing evidence to EU legislators of the need for strong standards and ways to monitor compliance with them will be a horizontal priority for Equinet. Once adopted, this newly proposed legislation will also have a larger-than-life symbolic value, strengthening the whole equality infrastructure in the EU.

We will continue to build the capacity and expertise of our members, to contribute to the equality agenda in Europe, and to maintain our position as a Research and Knowledge hub on equality issues. Building on our track record of innovation, bringing new equality issues and solutions to the forefront, in 2023 we will continue our focus on the equality implications of Artificial Intelligence, present fresh research on both sanctions and remedies in discrimination cases, as well as exploring the role and potential of Equality Bodies in responding to the equality implications of climate change.  

As in previous years, our Work Plan has a largely horizontal approach, all the while contributing to grounds-based policy and legislative priorities, particularly at EU level. This is intentional, mirroring the horizontal, multi-ground mandate of many Equality Bodies and the intersectional approach that this enables. This is a key asset of Equality Bodies and also helps us to move beyond a ‘siloed’ approach, tackling discrimination grounds separately, not acknowledging the multiple identities that each and every individual holds. Our ultimate aim remains helping Equality Bodies promote equality more effectively, prevent and combat discrimination and provide quick and effective access to justice to those who experience discrimination. 

We live in times when society and politics are bitterly divided between pro-equality forces and those who, often in the name of tradition, reject even the idea and concept – something that seems to be at odds with our values and constitutional traditions. While this fight can, at times, be disheartening, Equality Bodies are at the forefront of it and Equinet, as their Network, is there to support them, together with many allies in institutions and civil society. 
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Strategic Plan 2019-2022

Equinet, as a strong, engaged and innovative network, will continue to strengthen and support equality bodies and act as their expert voice to advance equality and non-discrimination in Europe. Our goal is to enable national equality bodies to fulfil their full potential to support people experiencing discrimination and to achieve substantive equality for all. Considering the increasingly challenging political, demographic and digital environment across Europe, enhancing the role of equality bodies as key champions for equality and safeguards for non-discrimination is more crucial than ever.

This Strategic Plan gives practical expression to our hopes and ambitions for the next four years. It should position Equinet to assist equality bodies to respond to the changing societal, political and policy landscape in relation to the equality and equal treatment sector in Europe. Over the 2019 – 2022 period, we look to build upon our past successes and learnings to guide our future work in a way that is coherent and progressive. Our network will seek to extend its reach within equality bodies to engage with the future generations of leaders within our members. We will also strategically broaden our institutional relations with a wider range of stakeholders at European and international level, and maximise the potential in new developments in a challenging context for equality. By the end of 2022, we will have enhanced the strategic and operational capacity of equality bodies, strengthened the knowledge and expertise of equality body staff, as well as the operational and institutional capacity of the Equinet Secretariat. We aim to see an increasing influence of the learning from the work of equality bodies on policy, programmes and practice for a more equal Europe. We will consolidate a sustainable and resilient network of strong equality bodies at the cutting edge of work on equality issues and aim for a wider recognition of Equinet and equality bodies’ vital role as catalysts towards full equality for all in Europe.