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Council

Council of Government of the Slovak Republic for Human Rights, National Minorities and Gender Equality

In November 2010, the Council of Government of the Slovak Republic for Human Rights, National Minorities and Gender Equality was set up as a permanent advisory body of the Government of the Slovak Republic. Based on this statute, many important systemic changes were introduced that were, also in the fields related to anti-discrimination, promising positive impacts in the field of communication of the government with NGOs, as well as in coordination of human rights in general and anti-discrimination in particular.

According to its statute, the council became a permanent expert, advisory, coordinating and consultative body of the government in the field of human rights including the rights of national minorities and ethnic groups and in the field of pursuing the principle of equal treatment and the principle of gender equality. Among its tasks are presenting opinions on national observance of international obligations in the field of human rights, ensuring coordination of ministerial policies in the field of human rights, cooperating with ministries and other central state administration bodies, local bodies, NGOs, academic institutions etc., submitting proposals related to human rights policies to the government, taking standpoints and commenting on bills and on topical issues in the field of human rights. The council of government has 36 members and unites representatives of the government, regional and local bodies, public human rights institution, NGOs, academic institutions and vice-chairpersons of the councilĀ“s committees (see below). The council meets at least four times a year.

The council has eight committees, which cover issues of national minorities and ethnic groups, non-governmental non-profit organisations, elder people, persons with disabilities, gender equality, children and youth, research and education in the field of human rights and development education and preventing and elimination of racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism and other forms of intolerance. The committees can refer to the council with proposals; cooperate with ministries and with other bodies and institutions, comment on laws and other binding or non-binding documents etc. If they adopt an opinion by at least 2/3 majority of all of their members, this opinion becomes binding for the council.