Paris declaration follow up: the role of youth and youth organisations


radicalisation
On 30th May, the Council of the European Union adopted conclusions on the role of the youth sector in an integrated and cross-sectoral approach to preventing and combating violent radicalisation of young people and also  conclusions on developing media literacy and critical thinking through education and training. The text of the conclusions stresses the invaluable contribution that youth work, voluntary and cultural activities and sport can make in reaching out to young people who might otherwise be more vulnerable to radicalisation and the key role education and training in helping young people to become media-literate and responsible citizens of the future. Also the Commissioner Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport Tibor Navracsics writes in this article the key contribution of youth organisation in tackling violent radicalisation. However, as the European Youth Forum states, not only youth organisations and young people should be concerned:  different sectors should jointly tackle this issue, in order to avoid blaming and stigmatising vulnerable young people.Also, the YFJ published the report “The Role of the Youth Sector in Preventing Violent Extremism.”

On 14 June, the European Commission issued a new Communication, indicating ways to prevent radicalisation which leads to violent extremism and terrorism. The Communication rightly addresses the need to prevent our citizens ending up on the margins of society and embracing violent behaviours and ideologies, and tackling the hatred that is spreading within an increasing group of our citizens. The Communication also emphasises the importance of combating hate speech and teaching media literacy, empowering civil society, working with communities, supporting educators and educational institutions, youth work and promoting common values and inclusive education.

Also, On 7 June, the European Commission registered a European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) ‘More than Education‘, inviting the Commission to propose “a set of incentive measures, including support and monitoring, to develop citizenship education in curricula on all levels of formal education throughout Europe, aimed at shaping democratic citizens”.