Visit from l’Amicale du Nid

On the 11th to the 13th of February 2013 BalticFem received a delegation from the French NGO, L´Amicale Du Nid (www.adn-asso.org ), AdN.  In  total  11 representatives  from the AdN and one representative of the Canadian organisation La Maison de Marthe came to Sweden and Stockholm to learn more about the Swedish work against sex trafficking and prostitution.

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AdN has eight different support centers in France working with women, young people, men and transsexuals who ended or risk ending up in prostitution. Their support centers are staffed with social workers, psychologists and sociologists, but also conduct outreach work in the field. AdN also works with information and training aimed at young people, politicians, teachers, civil servants, social workers, teachers and staff in the care sector.

L’Amicale Du Nid has its roots in an organisation that was formed in 1901, but has existed in its present form since 1946. The organisation’s premise is that prostitution and trafficking is a form of violence and oppression that violates personal dignity and integrity. They are keen to get a law in France that is similar to the current Swedish.

During their visit to Stockholm, the group got to meet members of the Swedish Gender Equality Minister’s political staff, Stockholm police section against human trafficking and prostitution, NGO 1000 Mojligheter, The municipality of Stockholm´s prostitution unit and Caritas Sweden, a of part of the ecumenical network against human trafficking.

Recession for Gender Equality in Europe

The economy of European countries after the financial crisis of 2008 is in recession or depression.  A rising unemployment and reduced welfare is affecting more and more social groups. Another effect of the still ongoing economic crisis is that the evolution of gender equality between men and women declines or stagnates. In the countries hardest hit we find clear indications that women, young people and migrants is at risk of trafficking and prostitution. European NGO’s will through their umbrella organization Aretusa jointly highlight various facts about the recession’s negative impact on gender development in Europe.

Member associations of  Aretusa will jointly focus on three priority areas and challenges;

• The risk that gender issues are forgotten when the European countries and institutions focusing on community and national efforts to address and combat the current economic crisis.

• The need for continued cooperation and transnational partnerships at European level to support social efforts to promote and protect women’s rights.

• The need for increased awareness and strengthened efforts at European and national level to further develop equality policies and ensure effective protection measures for trafficking victims at the local level.

A starting point for our work together will be The EU Directive 2011/36/EU on Preventing and combating trafficking. Through joint seminars and national meetings of the member organizations we will work out concrete measures on how the EU, its Member States and candidate countries can:

  • Ensure the continued effective management of the economic crisis without the risk that the aspect of gender equality is forgotten or resisted
  • Strengthen and develop the protection of people affected by or vulnerable to trafficking
  • Increase awareness and the need to develop the work against discrimination on multiple grounds

Support the activities of non-profit organisations working for the promotion of gender equality according to EU standards.

For further information contact:

Aretusa:  info.aretusa@gmail.comwww.aretusa.net

BalticFem: Lars Bäck, lars@balticfem.com 

European seminar i Brussels 25th April 2012

Gender vulnerabilities and challenges through the crisis.
NGO’s action for maintaining the commitment to gender equality at EU and local level.

Brussels, 25th April 2012, 3:00 p.m – 8:00 p.m. Venue: European Parliament

In the first session Aretusa Member Organisations will address three selected topics from different perspectives and Countries. Each organisation will offer inputs to stimulate the debate and the exchange of information during the roundtable.

  • Topic 1
    Equal economic independence for women and men (Employment and social inclusion)
  • Topic 2
    Equality in decision making (Participation in political and public decision)
  • Topic 3
    Dignity, integrity and ending gender violence (Violence as consequence of inequality) 

This is Aretusa

ARETUSA is the long term benefit of several years of informal networking between organisations from different Member States in the framework of the implementation of transnational European projects.

In Greek mythology, Aretusa was a nymph and daughter of Nereus and later became a fountain on the island of Ortygia in Syracuse, Sicily. On 6th December 2002, during the “Turning the spotlight on trafficking in women” conference, promoted by the European Commission and held in Syracuse by the Italian Ministry for Equal Opportunities, the European Network Against Trafficking in Women was launched to foster the exchange of expertise and best practices to prevent and combat violence against women and especially trafficking. The consortium was led by an Italian NGO (IRENE Association) in partnership with other women’s organisations based in Belgium, Spain, France, Greece, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland.

In 2006 the platform was enlarged to include organisations from the new EU member States: Hungary, Romania, Lithuania, Poland, Bulgaria. The platform has enabled an effective and cohesive cooperation among 80 women’s organisations from 21 EU member States. The network brings together organisations sharing the commitment towards gender equality in different fields of intervention (gender violence, participation to economic activities, social inclusion, participation to politics) and from different points of view (research, management of social services and shelters, advice on gender policies, mainstreaming).

By year 2007, 18 organisations decided to legally establish, on the basis of the effective cooperation developed since 2002, the international association named “Aretusa” as a permanent and cohesive framework in order to ensure the quality of future undertakings and to maximise the results of the networking activities in the field of gender equality.

Open letter to the French government

Open letter to the French government and French embassies in Europe

A Call to the French presidency on its action to liberate Europe from sex slavery?

“What has the French presidency done during the second half of 2008 to challenge the demand for sexual slavery in Europe?”

This is the question every citizen of Europe should ask after looking at the official program for all ministerial and expert meetings that have been arranged during the French presidency.
We, 17 non-governmental organizations, NGO’s, across Europe from 14 Member States, cannot find any evidence of any ambition to place this modern form of slavery in the public agenda.

Continue reading “Open letter to the French government”

Aretusa takes a new step forward

The network Aretusa was formally formed in 2007 by a number of nongoverment organizations within EU member countries to work jointly with combat sex trafficking and prostitution. Aretusa currently consists of 18 organizations from 15 EU Member States, one of the member organizations of the network is the Baltic Fem, City of Norrtalje, Sweden.
Right now in Aretusa a preparatory work is ongoing to shape a joint opinion campaign in 2009 with a focus on demand. The aim is to highlight the so-called purchasers of sex their responsibility and role in international trafficking and domestic prostitution.
Within Aretusa the member organizations at a number of working meetings during the autumn of 2008 has to work out the document and the actionplan for a coordinated campaign work in 2009. More information in Swedish and English will be published continuously on the Baltic Fem website.