ONLINE REVIEW SUMMARY
Due to the pandemic, the conference could not be held in Berlin as planned. In spring the conference was postponed until autumn 2020. On the 18th of May the Steering Committee decided to organise an online review to enable the Working Groups to present their achievements which they have been working on during the past year. In late May the German authorities decided to cancel all large events for year, 2020, thus EUFASA decided to organise a second online review on 8th July. Issues pertaining to the operation of EUFASA were approved by electronic vote.
WORKING GROUP REPORTS:
EUFASA Legal Matters
EUFASA AISBL Statutes
EUFASA has applied for an AISBL (Non-Profit Organization) registration in Belgium which will be confirmed by Royal Decree, issued by the Belgian Ministry of Justice. The AISBL Statutes will be reviewed by members. The Rules of Procedure (ROP) must be updated in accordance with the AISBL Statutes.
EUFASA Declaration on the Rights of the Foreign Service Families
A legally non-binding document was drafted for future EUFASA AISBL lobbying and negotiation of European common standards. General principles are spouses’ rights to medical care and social protection, acknowledgement of spouses’ contribution to state representation, compensation for the loss of social security and pension, consequences of divorce and the rights of children for education with regard to mobility and special education needs (SEN), and the rights of children from divorced families.
Work & Employment
A survey on state and private pensions for spouses/partners in EUFASA member countries. This is a complicated issue as various countries have or do not have plans, contributions or different methods for pensions. Assessment report in 2021.
Third Culture Kids (TCK)
TCK handbook was produced with information, a checklist and references for association members, plus a chapter on education and different school systems. Contact member associations for a copy of the handbook.
A survey on Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) funding of children’s education in EUFASA countries; to be reported in 2021.
UNSCR 1325 WG
United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000) on Women, Peace and Security
Funds from the Italian UNSCR 1325 National Action Plan (NAP) enabled Italian MFA spouses to attend a La Sapienza University course “Role of women in peace processes and in mediation of conflicts for protection of human rights”. The university proposed a series of four free webinars on related topics for EUFASA spouses/partners. Italy seeks to extend the programme in collaboration with other European universities and MFAs.
Research on Employment, the Role of Diplomatic Spouses, and Mental Health
An online survey with over 1200 respondents from all EUFASA countries including other European countries.
Proposal for a EUFASA Research Department
The aim is to consolidate professional scientific research as an important building block for the future operation of EUFASA AISBL. Following its registration as a legal entity, there is an opportunity to move the focus from identifying common problems towards influencing policy makers or legislators. Scientific research can help EUFASA increase its lobbying power on both national and EU level.