With a view of maintaining a close dialogue with civil society, EASO has set up a Consultative Forum as mechanism for the exchange of information and pooling of knowledge.
The Consultative Forum is open to relevant civil society organisations and relevant competent bodies operating in the field of asylum policy at local, regional, national, European or International level. In other words, every interested organisation can register for membership to the EASO Consultative Forum. To date, the Consultative Forum Registry includes members from 135 different organisations. The large majority constitute NGOs (62%), followed by IGOs (15%), academica (10%), representatives from Member State authorities (9%) and EU institutions (4%).
Different activities are implemented and civil society organisations are consulted in various different ways, including:
- Consultative Forum Meetings: Small Scale Thematic Meetings and Annual Plenary Meetings;
- Consultations and on-line consultations including surveys on key EASO documents such as the Work Programme, the Annual Report on the Situation of Asylum in the EU, the General Annual Report as well as consultations on draft training modules, practical tools and guides;
- Direct involvement of selected CSOs in various EASO activities through invitations to thematic conferences, meetings, workshops, working parties and expert meetings.
Highlights of Consultative Forum activities in 2018
- Three Consultative Forum meetings: a thematic meeting on 28th March in Malta concerning the provision of information to applicants for international protection; an informal Consultative Forum Planning Meeting in Brussels on 18th June where participants continued discussions on the provision of information and also contributed their ideas for the Plenary, and the 8th Annual Plenary Meeting on reception which took place on 5th December in Brussels.
- Six electronic consultations with carried out with more than 121 contributions received. The consultations concerned the Annual Report on the Situation of Asylum in 2017, the draft Work Programme 2019, the Annual General Report 2017 as well as the draft EASO judicial analysis on detention of applicants for international protection in the context of the Common European Asylum System. In addition, to inform about its research activities, EASO asked civil society for input on the situation of applicants from Bangladesh in the EU+ via an online survey. Finally an open survey on CSOs’ information activities fed into the CF thematic meeting on access to information as well as the resulting Briefing Paper.
- Briefing Paper on the provision of information including a cross sectional analysis of asylum-related information activities implemented by civil society organisations, focusing in particular on those catering to information needs of applicants for international protection. This Briefing Paper was a concrete output following the thematic meeting and the survey on the provision of information.
- Numerous CSOs directly took part in many different EASO meetings and activities related to EASO operations, COI meetings, development of practical tools, training modules, material and training sessions, as well as activities in the context of the Vulnerability Expert Network (VEN).
More information on the workings of the Consultative Forum can be found
For any information, please contact the EASO Consultative Forum Contact Point at Consultative-Forum@easo.europa.eu.