EUROPEAN SOLIDARITY CORPS: COMMISSION PROPOSES MORE THAN €340 MILLION TO ENABLE 100 000 PLACEMENTS BY 2020
Today, the Commission has put the European Solidarity Corps on a firm footing by proposing a budget for the next three years and a dedicated legal base.
This will help consolidate the initiative and create more opportunities for young people. As well as offering volunteering, traineeships and job placements, the European Solidarity Corps will now also provide participants the opportunity to set up their own solidarity projects or to volunteer as a group.
During a first phase launched in December 2016 eight different programmes were mobilised to offer volunteering, traineeship or job opportunities under the European Solidarity Corps. More than 30,000 young people have already signed up and the first participants have now started their placements. Under the leadership of Commissioners Oettinger, Navracsics and Thyssen, the Commission is today proposing to equip the European Solidarity Corps with one single legal base, its own financing mechanism and a broader set of solidarity activities. This will help further increase its coherence, impact and cost-effectiveness. The Commission proposes to allocate €341.5 million to the European Solidarity Corps over the period 2018-2020, to enable 100,000 young Europeans to take part by the end of 2020. Read the Press Release here
EUROPEAN ALLIANCE FOR APPRENTICESHIPS TAKES STOCK OF ACHIEVEMENTS
The European Commission holds in Malta today a conference to take stock of results and show the way forward on the European Alliance for Apprenticeships (EAfA) with key stakeholders at national, regional and EU level coming together to celebrate four successful years of the Alliance. With 33 newcomers, there are at present 207 pledges by companies, social partners, chambers, education and training providers, youth organisations and others. Through these pledges, the stakeholders show their commitment to improve the supply, quality, and image of apprenticeships. Newcomers include companies like Airbus, Bankia and Carrefour, but also the regions Lombardy, Veneto and the Metropolitan City of Rome Capital in Italy, as well as Castile and León in Spain. Over 200,000 apprenticeships, training and first-job offers are being pledged by new EAfA members in Malta. After Portugal, Iceland and Serbia sign national commitments today, the EAfA embraces 35 countries, including 27 EU Member States, 3 EFTA and 5 Candidate countries. “Today we mark four years of the European Alliance for Apprenticeships. More than 700,000 offers have been mobilised since 2013. It shows that apprenticeships work, it helps young people into jobs and gives employers access to great talent.” said Marianne Thyssen, the Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility. The event will also see the launch of a new European Network of Apprentices. The event is supported by the Maltese Presidency, the Malta College of Arts Science and Technology and the Malta Chamber of Commerce. More on the EAfA can be found here. Details on the achievements are also contained in a new summary report and brochure published today. Under the New Skills Agenda for Europe, the Commission will continue to roll out measures that support quality apprenticeships in Europe. Social media: #ApprenEU. The conference is webstreamed here.
WORLD NO TOBACCO DAY: MORE THAN ONE IN FOUR EU CITIZENS STILL SMOKE
A survey published by the European Commission today, on the eve of World No Tobacco Day, shows no decrease in the overall smoking rate in the EU (26%) since 2014. Amongst people aged 15 to 24 the rate has increased from 25% in 2014 to 29% in 2017. Vytenis Andriukaitis, Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, said: “The increase in youth smoking rates illustrates the urgency for Member States to enforce the provisions of the Tobacco Products Directive which forbid attractive cigarettes aimed at enticing young people: characterising flavours, small packs, ‘lipstick-style’ packs and misleading elements on packaging. Since May this year all such products must have disappeared from the EU market. I encourage all Member States to use all additional tools at their disposal to protect young people and inform the public about the dangers of using tobacco.” Significant differences exist between EU countries, with the highest smoking rates in Greece (37%), Bulgaria, France (both 36%) and Croatia (35%). At 7%, Sweden has the lowest smoking rate in the EU. Regular e-cigarette use remains stable at 2%, with 15% having tried such products at some point. With regard to attitudes to tobacco and e-cigarette control measures, the majority of those surveyed (63%) think e-cigarette use should be banned in places where there are smoking bans; and 46% are in favour of plain packaging for cigarettes. The next survey is planned for 2019/2020, which will be the moment to assess the first impact of the Tobacco Products Directive. The full Eurobarometer is available here.
First Vice-President Frans Timmermans to host Facebook Live chat
Tomorrow, First Vice-President Frans Timmermans will host a Facebook Live chat to discuss issues around “Social Europe”. The chat, which will take place at 17:00 and can be followed here, is part of the Facebook Live series that First Vice-President Timmermans has been hosting in recent months. The White Paper presented by the Commission in March started a process of an open and wide-ranging debate on the future of Europe. Live talks are a great opportunity to directly exchange views with European citizens but also to listen, answer questions and address any concerns. A teaser for the chat is available on the European Commission Facebook page and there is more information on the blog post.
NEWS IN FULL
Daily News 30 – 04 -2017