The European Commission published on May 19 the report on the implementation of the Charter of fundamental rights of the European Union in 2015 – explaining how the fundamental rights were applied in European policies within Member States.
With the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty on 1 December 2009, the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union became legally binding. Its provisions are mainly addressed to the EU institutions and the Member States while implementing the European law.
According to the report, a number of legislative projects aimed to promote fundamental rights have been brought forward in 2015. Amongst others, the Data Protection reform package, the Directive on special safeguards for children in criminal proceedings or the Victims’ Right Directive can be listed.
“If we want to truly achieve an area of freedom, security and justice, we need to actively promote our fundamental rights and raise the level of actual protection throughout the EU,” underlined Věra Jourová, EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender equality, “this year the EU has taken concrete steps to strengthen fundamental rights, for instance by finalising the data protection reform and new rules on safeguards for children in criminal proceedings and by stepping up the fight against incitement to hatred. Fundamental rights exist not only on paper but must be delivered in practice. Our citizens demand it.“
For more information on the implementation of the Victims’ Right Directive, read “Europe Is not in Good Shape to Fight against Migrants Smugglers.“
It explains the way used by the European Commission to take the Charter into account in its legislative and policy work in 2015, including the measures put forward to better manage migration at EU level (European Agenda on Migration) or to reinforce security (European Agenda on Security).
Finally, it provides examples of how the Charter was applied by the European Court of Justice and presents the main developments of the case law.
First Vice-President Frans Timmermans said: “Fundamental rights are the foundation of our European Union and our communities. In recent times, they have come under pressure because of a rise of intolerance, xenophobia and hate speech.”
The vice president also stressed that it is vital ti uphold democracy, fundamental rights and the rule of law and that, in this respect, the rights enshrined in the Charter of Fundamental Rights play a pivotal role.
“We must continue to work to make sure that they are a reality for everyone across Europe,” he concluded.
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