Tuesday, June 13, 2017

International Call to Promote and Protect Families during the Budapest Family Summit

Between 25-28 May 2017, I had the honor of participating in the Budapest Family Summit that consisted of four important pro – family and pro – life events, as a guest of the Hungarian government. The four events were: the Hungarian Demographic Forum, the World Congress of families, the International Forum of Families and the One Of Us Conference. I had the privilege to speak at the Hungarian Demographic Forum which was organized by the Hungarian Government. I participated in a panel that consisted of members of the (European) Parliament and Government Commissioner Máriusz Révész. It was chaired by Bence Rétvári, Deputy Minister of Human Capacities. In my remarks at the Demographic Forum, I made a reference to the demographic situation for families in Europe today and underlined the need to uphold the traditional definition of marriage, press for the respect of the sovereignty of the family and rethink our economic model. You can find the full text of my speech below.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Council of Europe report protects the freedom of parents to raise their children according to their religious beliefs

On the 27th of April, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) adopted, by 44 votes to 19, a report on the protection of the "The protection of the rights of parents and children belonging to religious minorities". The rapporteur for this report  was ECPM Member Valeriu Ghiletchi (MP, Moldova). The report calls on Council of Europe (CoE) Member States to protect religious freedoms in each country and to respect the right of parents to raise their children according to their religious beliefs.

New Council of Europe report on domestic workers protects pregnant women and their unborn child

Yesterday, on the 30st of May, the Standing Committee of the Council of Europe adopted the resolution on "The employment rights of domestic workers, especially women, in Europe" drafted by Romanian MP Viorel Badea. The PACE’s Standing Committee has called on ember States to guarantee the social protection and labour rights of domestic workers, in particular normal hours of work, periods of daily and weekly rest and annual leave, minimum wage coverage, social security protection, occupational safety and health and decent working conditions. 

This report also calls to protect pregnant women and their unborn child and the pressure to women to terminate their pregnancies. 

Article 4.3. "extend maternity protection and work–family balance to the domestic work sphere, including paid maternity and parental leave, adequate rest periods, time for breastfeeding, childcare facilities and freedom from maternity-based discrimination and ensure that pregnant working women are practically supported during their pregnancies to safeguard their health and well-being and that of their unborn child; and that in no circumstances pregnant working women are put under pressure by their employers to terminate their pregnancy"

We congratulate MP Viorel Badea to put this topic under the attention of the Member States of the Council of Europe 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

We do not want a Down Free Society but a Down Friendly Society


On the 21st of March, we celebrated the World Down Syndrome Day at the European Parliament. The activities to honour this day started last week, when the Brussels office of ECPM took part in the Socks' Battle that was organized to draw attention to the rights of people, and especially children with Down syndrome. Yesterday, ECPM-MEP Marek Jurek co-hosted with MEP Miroslav Mikolášik a well - attended conference with the title: "Are we in Europe doing our best for the health of people with trisomy 21?" The Conference was addressed by the President of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani as well as MEP Pieter Liese. During this conference, I was invited to tell about the NIPT Test that is a serious threath to the future existence of people with Down Syndrome. I also presented a statement we prepared against the use of prenatal testing techniques that target Down syndrome in collaboration with the World Youth Alliance and based on the petition of the LeJeun Foundation.

Friday, February 17, 2017

The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe endorses a PACE report on the Oversexualization of Children

A few days ago, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe (CoE) (which is the statutory decision making body of the CoE) endorsed a report of its Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) on the oversexualisation of children. It also encouraged its Member States to take concrete steps in protecting children. The rapporteur for this report was ECPM Member Valeriu Ghiletchi (MP, Moldova). His report highlighted the negative consequences of the oversexualisation and objectification of children by the media, marketing campaigns as well as television programmes. Additionally, the recommendations submitted to the Committee of Ministers called for the inclusion of the issue of the oversexualisation of children in their "Council of Europe Strategy for the Rights of the Child" (2016-2021). Moreover, it invites the relevant Council of Europe Committees to take more actionWe strongly welcome the endorsement of this report from the Council of Ministers. Now, their recommendations should be actively implemented.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Personal New Year's Message

"For I know the plans I have for you" declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" Jeremiah 29:11

Dear friends,

Another year has passed. Usually, during the last days of every year, most people contemplate what happened in the past year and try to envision and plan their next steps. Last year, in my New Year's message, I wrote that "2015 was a year filled with fear and uncertainty." When I composed last year's message, it was a few weeks after Brussels was locked down because of fears of a terrorist attack. Unfortunately, this became a reality when a double bomb attack took place Brussels on the 22nd of March, followed by other terrorist attacks in Nice and more recently in Berlin. Moreover, the humanitarian tragedies that came as a result of conflicts around the world, especially in the Middle East, were also prevalent this year and they are expected to continue to shock and cause us distress in 2017. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Even after different manipulative efforts, the Parliamentary Assembly says a clear NO to surrogacy

On Tuesday the 11th of October, the last debates and votes on a controversial recommendation on surrogacy took place in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE). This recommendation was based on a rejected resolution that asked for a legal framework for the so-called “not-for profit surrogacy”. Interestingly, the first report was rejected in its entirety by the Committee on Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development (SOC) of PACE last March, forcing the rapporteur to draft another report. However, the resolution of the new report was also rejected in a Committee meeting last September. Strangely enough, a recommendation that was based on the rejected resolution was adopted. This was a mistaken decision. This became evident by the fact that before the plenary debate, the SOC voted with a large majority two amendments (24 against 16 for the first amendment and 27 against 16 for the second) to this controversial recommendation that ask for a complete European ban on surrogacy. The rejections of both the first report as well as the resolution of the second report and the clear amendments on the controversial recommendation clearly showed what the majority of the SOC does NOT want: to create a legal framework on surrogacy! The SOC finally asked to have a European ban on surrogacy! This article tells about what has happened in order to show the manipulative tactics that have been used to try to get a very controversial report being passed. Fortunately, they have not succeeded