1048th meeting – 11-12 February 2009

Appendix 12
(Item 4.4c)

Terms of reference of the Committee of Experts on discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity (DH-LGBT)

Fact sheet

Name of Committee:

Committee of Experts on discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity (DH-LGBT)

Compliance with Resolution Res(2005)47:

YES

Programme of Activities: project(s)

2008/DGHL/1409 “Substantive legal analysis of human rights issues and input in the development of Council of Europe policies on such issues”

Project relevance:

The Action Plan of the Third Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe (Warsaw, 16-17 May 2005, CM(2005)80 final, 17 May 2005), notably chapter I.2 “Protecting and promoting human rights through the other Council of Europe institutions and mechanisms”.

The Statute of the Council of Europe (1949, ETS No. 001) – Contribution to core values: protection and promotion of human rights, rule of law and democratic pluralist system.

Decision No. CM/876/02072008, adopted by the Ministers’ Deputies at their 1031st meeting (2 July 2008), “giving ad hoc terms of reference for the Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH), with a view to preparing a recommendation on discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity”, is the source of political justification and framework of the Committee’s work.

This work, which involves representatives of civil society, takes into account in particular the case law of the European Court of Human Rights and aims at guiding states as to the measures to be taken to combat discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, to ensure respect for the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons and to promote tolerance towards them.

Project added value:

In partnership with other international organisations (governmental or otherwise), which will be represented in the meetings of the Committee, the DH-LGBT prepares the first instrument of the Council of Europe on discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity.

Financial information:

Work will be completed in 2009 by the DH-LGBT (9 members) which will meet twice.

The cost is about €32 700 = €18 000 (experts' costs) + €11 700 (interpretation costs) + €2 000 (translation costs) + €1 000 (production of documents).

Terms of reference of the Committee of Experts on discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity (DH-LGBT)

1.

Name of Committee:

Committee of Experts on discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity (DH-LGBT)

2.

Type of Committee:

Committee of Experts

3.

Source of terms of reference:

Committee of Ministers on the proposal of the Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH)

4.

Terms of reference:

 

Having regard to:

-

Resolution Res(2005)47 on committees and subordinate bodies, their terms of reference and working methods;

-

the Declaration and the Action Plan adopted at the Third Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe member states (Warsaw, 16-17 May 2005, CM(2005)80 final, 17 May 2005), in particular chapter I.2 “Protecting and promoting human rights through the other Council of Europe institutions and mechanisms”;

-

Decision No. CM/876/02072008, adopted by the Ministers’ Deputies at their 1031st meeting (2 July 2008), giving ad hoc terms of reference for the Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH), with a view to preparing a recommendation on discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity;

-

the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (1950, ETS No. 005).

 

Under the authority of the Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH) and in relation with the implementation of Project 2008/DGHL/1409 “Substantive legal analysis of human rights issues and input in the development of Council of Europe policies on such issues”, the Committee is instructed to:

i.

draft a recommendation on measures to combat discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, to ensure respect for the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons and to promote tolerance towards them.

5.

Composition of the Committee:

5.A.

Members

Governments of member states are entitled to appoint representatives with the relevant qualifications on issues concerning the rights of LGBT persons.

The Council of Europe budget will bear the travel and subsistence expenses of 9 members appointed by the following member states: Austria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”.

The above-mentioned states may send (an) additional representative(s) to meetings of the Committee at their own expense. Representatives appointed by other member states may participate in the meetings of the Committee at the expense of these states.

5.B.

Participants

i.

The European Committee on Legal Co-operation (CDCJ) may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote and at the expense of correspondent budgetary articles of the Council of Europe.

ii.

The European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote and at the expense of its administrative budget.

iii.

The Parliamentary Assembly may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote and at the expense of its administrative budget.

iv.

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote and at the expense of its administrative budget.

v.

The Registry of the European Court of Human Rights may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote and at the expense of its administrative budget.

vi.

The Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote and at the expense of its administrative budget.

vii.

The Conference of INGOs of the Council of Europe may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote and at the expense of the body that they represent.

5.C.

Other participants

i.

The European Commission, the Council of the European Union and the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote or defrayal of expenses.

ii.

States with observer status of the Council of Europe (Canada, Holy See, Japan, Mexico, United States of America) may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote or defrayal of expenses.

iii.

The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) / the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote or defrayal of expenses.

5.D.

Observers

The following non member state:

- Belarus;

and the following non-governmental organisations:

- Amnesty International;
- International Commission of Jurists (CIJ);
- International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH);
- International Lesbian and Gay Association – Europe (ILGA – Europe);
- TransGender EU (TGEU);
- European Group of National Institutions for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights;

may send (a) representative(s) to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote or defrayal of expenses.

6.

Working methods and structures:

 

In order to carry out its tasks, the Committee may, where necessary, within the limits of available budgetary appropriations, seek advice of external experts, have recourse to consultants and consult with relevant non-governmental organisations and other members of civil society.

The CDDH is entitled to invite other participants and/or observers to meetings of the Committee, without the right to vote or defrayal of expenses.

7.

Duration:

 

These terms of reference will expire on 30 December 2009.



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