Saturday, 5 June 2010

Times: 'Equality promotion commission should widen its remit'

Saturday, 5th June 2010 by Claudia Calleja

The National Commission for the Promotion of Equality should widen its remit to include issues concerning age, religion and sexual orientation, Education and Family Minister Dolores Cristina said.

In 2004, the commission started out by dealing with cases of gender equality that then expanded to race-related discrimination. Ms Cristina said she now wished that, in the next few months, the NCPE would continue with its current work and also strive to promote equality in terms of age, religion and sexual orientation.

Speaking during the launch of the NCPE's 2009 annual report, Ms Cristina pointed out that the six-year term of the present commission members had expired. Cabinet had approved the new members who would be announced once the members themselves were informed and accepted their nomination, she said.

Due to other plans, NCPE commissioner Janet Mifsud has asked that her term would not be renewed.

The annual report showed that, last year, the NCPE received 35 complaints, 25 of which were on grounds of gender discrimination at work or during training. Four of the 25 cases were lodged by men.

Complaints included lack of childcare facilities, unfair treatment due to family responsibilities, allegations of sexual harassment and work dismissal due to pregnancy.

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