The Churches' Commission for Migrants in Europe (CCME) in cooperation with Eurodiaconia organized a training seminar under the topic “The Free Movement and Social Rights for Mobile European Citizens” in Brussels between the 21st and the 22nd of January 2015. Representatives form all over Europe such as Belgium, Germany, Italy, Great Britain, Sweden, Czech Republic and Denmark were present. The Church of Cyprus was represented by Deacon f. Nektarios Ioannou. The General Secretaries of the two organizations welcomed the representatives.

The entire seminar was formed in three sections. During the first section Mr. Michal Meduna spoke on behalf of the European Commission and the DG of Justice where he explained the legal framework of the European Commission for its citizens which move from one place to another due to changes in their lives (work, family reasons, etc.). In addition Mr. Antony Valcke from the university of Genk presented cases of European citizens that ended up in courts, which decisions are now part of the legislation of the European Union. At the second part professor Mr. Verschueren from the university of Antwerp and Mr. Mauro on behalf of FEANTSA organization presented the rights of the European citizens and especially of those that are in a constant move as well as those that are living in countries with out a job and have no permanent residence.

At the third section that took place on the 22nd of January the speakers explained the different social insurance systems in the different countries of the European Union. Mr. Albert Otting, on behalf of the European Commission and of the DG for Work, mentioned the procedures for recognizing the years of employment when a European citizen changes country as well as the problems that arise because of such cases. Finally Mr. Matt Moriarty presented the British social insurance system with its idiorrhythms.

After the end of each section an interesting and dynamic dialogue followed while the role of the churches was also mentioned for the proper information of their faithful.





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