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Refreshing the youth agenda of the Council of Europe

Report | Doc. 11696 | 25 September 2008

(Former) Committee on Culture, Science and Education
Rapporteur :
Mr André SCHNEIDER, France, EPP/CD


Some forty years on from the youth debates of the late 1960s, the Assembly is asking the Council of Europe to refresh its approach to youth co-operation.

This call is addressed to European governments which should develop youth policies in concertation with young people. It is addressed to the Committee of Ministers which should ensure adequate funding is provided for the Council of Europe’s intergovernmental programme of activities being developed with the support of the ministers competent for youth questions and the relevant ministries and co-managed with youth representatives.

The members of the Parliamentary Assembly are asked to involve young people in their activities both in the Council of Europe and nationally.

Finally, a challenge is issued to young people and in particular youth organisations that they insist on the possibilities offered by the Council of Europe for effective interaction.

A Draft recommendation

1. Young people are no younger than they were some forty years ago in 1968 when the Parliamentary Assembly held a major debate on youth questions. However, their situation has changed and it is relevant for the Council of Europe to review its position.
2. It has often been observed that young people are our future. Young people are also part of our present. Yet young people in Europe today are a decreasing percentage of the population.
3. Past calls for the provision of a debating platform for young people should be transformed into a means of their effective involvement. Young people must be in touch, know they are in touch and assume responsibility for being in touch with government.
4. The creative potential of young people should be valued and encouraged.
5. There is therefore a real need for youth policy to be taken seriously if we want to ensure the sustainability of our European society.
6. Youth policies should be established at local, regional and national levels. They should be promoted, and where relevant complemented, by action at European level.
7. The Assembly therefore recommends that the Committee of Ministers invite the governments of member states and bodies responsible for youth questions at national, regional and local levels to:
7.1 establish the following conditions as a basis for youth policy:
7.1.1 education for democratic citizenship;
7.1.2 lifelong learning (initial and continued training);
7.1.3 employment;
7.1.4 social inclusion and youth autonomy;
7.1.5 personal and community safety;
7.1.6 participatory structures for youth involvement at all levels;
7.2 ensure that youth policy debate focuses on relevant issues that are defined on a continuously interactive basis of consultation with young people and include such subjects as:
7.2.1 mobility;
7.2.2 faith and intercultural dialogue;
7.2.3 intergenerational dialogue;
7.2.4 gender specific issues;
7.2.5 environment;
7.2.6 employment;
7.2.7 health;
7.2.8 children;
7.2.9 bioethics;
7.2.10 new information technologies;
7.2.11 world political issues;
7.3 pay special attention to the support of disadvantaged young people and those with special needs such as migrants and rural youth.
8. The solid experience and achievements of the Council of Europe youth sector are considerable. Priority should however be given to promotion of constructive forward-looking activities rather than monitoring procedures and past achievements.
9. The Assembly therefore recommends that the Committee of Ministers refresh the youth agenda of the Council of Europe and in particular:
9.1 strengthen the role of the European Youth Centres in Strasbourg and Budapest which are places of networking provision of non-formal education, capacity building and which promote Council of Europe core values;
9.2 recognise and reinforce the unique role of the European Youth Foundation in strengthening civil society and associating young people in activities at local, regional, national and pan-European levels;
9.3 ensure adequate funding for the youth sector and its activities;
9.4 give a favourable response to the proposals of the European Youth Ministers’ meeting in Kyiv in October 2008 for the future youth agenda of the Council of Europe in the intergovernmental sector;
9.5 continue to support and promote the Council of Europe’s youth sector’s co-management system as a unique and valuable co-operation and decision-making mechanism between governments and youth organisations;
9.6 associate young people in Council of Europe activity in general and in such priority areas as intercultural dialogue, and education for democratic citizenship and human rights as well as in the fixing of budgetary allocations;
9.7 encourage all Council of Europe Steering Committees, in co-operation with the European Steering Committee for Youth, to ensure that a youth dimension is taken into account when defining and carrying out their programmes of activities;
9.8 recognise the added value of partnerships with international organisations and other stakeholders of youth policy in Europe;
9.9 continue to develop its training programmes for young political leaders and associate the School for Political Studies more closely with its other activity in the youth sector.

B Draft resolution

1. The Parliamentary Assembly has been a long-standing and active partner in the promotion of youth policies and youth activity in the Council of Europe.
2. A key element has been encouragement of the active participation of young people in civil and institutional life. This is one of the objectives of the European Youth Centres set up in Strasbourg and Budapest. It should be part of youth policy at European, national and local levels.
3. In the context of refreshing the youth agenda of the Council of Europe and in parallel to its Recommendation … (2008) on the role of governments, the Assembly itself:
3.1 reasserts the possibility for its committees and sub-committees to meet in the European Youth Centre in Budapest as in Order 517 (1996) and take advantage of the facilities offered now by the European Youth Centre in Strasbourg;
3.2 reiterates its request to its political groups to associate their respective political youth organisations in Assembly activities;
3.3 calls on its members, and in particular its younger members, to assume a more active role in championing the views of young people in Assembly debates and in committing themselves personally to involvement in the youth activities of the Council of Europe;
3.4 decides to hold round tables and hearings with youth representatives and young political leaders on subjects of common interest and seek in general the more open involvement of young people in its meetings, missions, and debates;
3.5 urges its members to convey to their own constituencies and their own parliaments awareness of the need to involve young people in discussion of current issues along the lines of the Revised European Charter on the Participation of Young People in Local and Regional Life.
4. The Assembly also calls on young people in general and on youth organisations in particular to insist on the possibilities that exist for interaction with the Council of Europe and in particular with the Parliamentary Assembly.

C Explanatory memorandum, by Mr Schneider

1 Introduction

1. The Council of Europe has a long and distinguished track record in the youth field. Yet, as both the youth agenda and the European agenda evolve, there is a risk of the Council of Europe being left behind unless it connects with new challenges while holding on to established principles and standards. Put differently, it needs to reflect on which sacred cows now perhaps need to be slain, and which cherished values still need to be passionately defended. There will be many views on these issues. What follows is an attempt to capture some of those issues, to provide an anchor or a foundation for debate. The rapporteur thanks Mr Howard Williamson for his assistance in drafting the report.

2 The challenge

2. There was a time when the nation states of Europe “made” their young people but now it is for young people to “make” their Europe. For them to do so, governments have to create appropriate enabling conditions. We often hear the mantra that young people are the future and should be viewed as a “resource to be managed, not a problem to be solved”. But there is certainly a need for youth policy to be taken seriously if we want to ensure the sustainability of our societies and that of Europe overall.
3. It is reasonable to suggest that those enabling conditions for effective youth policy comprise four elements: lifelong learning, active citizenship, social inclusion, and personal and community safety (or security). Such overarching themes can comfortably accommodate both broader and more specific issues, from migration to the environment, and from children’s rights to vocational competence. Indeed, part of the configuration of learning incorporates knowledge, skills and attitudes; that of citizenship issues such as identity, membership, belonging, voice and participation; that of inclusion questions of access, opportunity, engagement, recognition, value and respect; and that of safety concepts of security, support and protection. The important point here is that these themes usually resonate positively with political, professional, public and personal priorities.

3 The needs of young people

4. Another time-honoured mantra is that young people are not an homogeneous group. There is always a debate to be had about the variety of “need”, the various “wants” and the range of issues within the lives of (different groups of) young people. A paradox of the 2002 EU youth White Paper on A New Impetus for Youth, in its call to promote the greater autonomy of youth, was that youth research tends to suggest that, in the context of increasingly complex transitions from childhood to adulthood, there is rather a need for greater levels of support. The square is circled, of course, by advocating support that ultimately enables autonomy – or the capacity for “life management” – so that young people are not kicked around by forces outside their control.
5. There are arguably four broad “lines” for focus of reflection on young people’s needs. Two are what might be called general, or universal, needs. The first is concerned with formal learning pathways that hopefully ultimately lead to purposeful and productive engagement in economic life: education, training and employment. What kinds of knowledge, understanding, skills, competences, aptitudes and attitudes do young people need to acquire to give them the greater repertoire of choice and opportunity in future labour markets? The second is concerned with less formal, and sometimes “non-formal” learning – within family life and leisure time. The question here is the same as that above, but the context and destination is private life and civil society.
6. The other two “lines” are more specific. One concerns young people who might be called “troubled” and the other those who are “troublesome”. The terminology is always contentious, not least because the two groups often overlap. Nevertheless, it remains useful at a policy level to think about vulnerable groups who require additional forms of support and challenging groups who require supplementary forms of intervention. The former group would include, for example, young people with learning or physical disabilities or those who are homeless, while the latter group would include young offenders or those involved in problematic substance misuse. Reaching out to and engaging such groups has always been, and remains, a huge policy test.
7. The research literature tells us forcefully and consistently that youth transitions have become prolonged, more complex and reversible. No longer do they follow some kind of natural, linear progression from finding work to leaving home, and from independent living and the establishment of adult relationships to family formation. Rather, though many young people have greater potential opportunities than ever before, their decisions invariably carry greater risks and there is also a corresponding prospect of greater vulnerability. In such circumstances, young people need to remain “in good shape” to deal with the personal, social and economic challenges ahead of them. They need to develop the capacity, competence and confidence for future family life, civic engagement and labour market participation.

4 A policy argument

8. Within national policies directed at young people both the tradition and temptation is to direct attention and resources at the problems generated by young people and to seek solutions narrowly focused on those issues. Examples would include early drop-out from school, young pregnancy and parenthood, substance abuse and, arguably in pole position, youth criminality and antisocial behaviour.
9. Yet there is an alternative position that is often encapsulated politically in the advocacy of “prevention” and the economics of “invest to save”. This leads us away from a problem-oriented policy framework towards one that is “opportunity-focused”. It is premised upon the thinking that, in the complex contemporary world, young people need a diverse “package” of opportunities and experiences through which to learn, develop, refine and apply a repertoire of skills.
10. This package is not cast in stone but suggests a learning framework that incorporates both formal and non-formal learning, access to leisure and culture opportunities, engagement with youth organisations, experiences away from home and internationally, familiarity with new information and communication technologies, appropriate advice and information services … and other things. These appear to be the kinds of “entitlements” that equip young people to be active agents in their own lives. Many are often acquired through personal motivation and private resources, and through family support, but some young people do not have such internal catalysts; it is in their direction, in particular, that public sector youth policy needs to turn.
11. The youth policy debate, however, has a dual-track dimension. While it is, significantly, about social inclusion and ensuring greater (if not equal) opportunities for more vulnerable and disadvantaged groups, it is also about adding value to the experiences of those young people who are already safely on successful pathways of transition. Youth policy contributes here on issues such as involving young people in decision making, promoting environmental awareness and cultivating more broadly engagement with civil society and the promotion of active citizenship.
12. Balancing these two agendas – of social inclusion and active citizenship – does require some measured decisions but, in essence, they are not distinctive and separate themes; rather, they are different points on the same continuum, and youth policy at all levels has to judge who to move along it, why they should be the priority, and how.

5 The youth agenda of the Council of Europe

13. The institution of the Council of Europe is the defender and proponent of human rights, democracy and the rule of law. These fundamental principles have been “translated” into the youth field into a mosaic of practice, focus and methodology. The youth work of the Council of Europe has addressed youth participation, education for democratic citizenship and human rights, intercultural learning, combating racism and intolerance, promoting leadership and autonomy, enabling diversity and inclusion, learning for active citizenship, and fostering equalities and access.
14. The delivery of such work has been, inter alia, through training courses, symposia, study sessions, seminars, campaigns, and educational resources – all largely premised on a philosophy and pedagogy of active and experiential learning.
15. There is little point here in elaborating on too much detail, for this is generally well known. Some highlights will, however, be identified:
  • training courses of different formats and time spans aiming at forming different competences, building capacities and networks to develop and implement projects;
  • study sessions in co-operation with youth associations on selected subjects relevant to the youth sector’s priorities;
  • youth research and policy activities bringing together youth expertise from the triangle of youth policy makers, youth researchers and youth organisations;
  • youth policy reviews: external review of national youth policies to support both national and international youth policy development;
  • All Different, All Equal campaigns: against racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia and intolerance in 1995 and on human rights, diversity and participation in 2006 and 2007;
  • support for a variety of networks to foster collaboration, developmental work and the exchange of good practice.
16. There is no doubt that, through its multifaceted youth activity, the Council of Europe (for the past decade or so through its dedicated Youth Directorate) has had a unique and important role in youth policy development and delivery, not least in the arenas of active democracy, human rights and living together in diverse societies. These, and other themes, are captured in the draft “Agenda 2020” document being prepared for the European Youth Ministers Conference in Kyiv, Ukraine, in October 2008.
17. This work has increasingly dovetailed with some of the aspirational youth work of the European Commission. This led, initially in 1998, to a Council of Europe/EU partnership on training and curriculum development that produced a long-term training scheme on European citizenship and the course on advanced training for trainers in Europe, and subsequently to further partnership in the fields of youth research and Euro-Mediterranean co-operation. These were all consolidated into a single Youth Partnership in 2005, which has just been confirmed and renewed. Its major challenge is establishing its priorities within a field of growing demands and a simultaneous reluctance to “let go” of established ground.

6 Challenges for the 21st century

18. The youth agenda within the Council of Europe was arguably triggered post-1968 following les événements and other student and young worker unrest across Europe. The demand of and for youth voice was deafening. The European Youth Centre in Strasbourg was established in 1972. Youth participation was the paramount priority and has since remained a central thread of all the Council of Europe’s youth policy work.
19. Following the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the dramatic enlargement of democratic Europe – but with it a host of suspicions, intolerances and hostilities – the youth agenda shifted somewhat to embrace the priority of intercultural tolerance and understanding and young people from former communist countries shared opportunities with their counterparts from western Europe, though inevitably with very different beliefs, values and experiences. In this spirit, the European Youth Centre in Budapest was created in 1995.
20. It could be suggested that 2001 serves as a third watershed for the youth agenda of the Council of Europe. Though the attacks on the twin towers in New York may offer a symbolic threshold, they are not the only reason. Europe now faces huge demographic challenges: its youth population is shrinking and its overall population is ageing fast. And, for various reasons (not least the substantial enlargement of the European Union), patterns of migration and mobility in Europe have transformed in recent years. As a result, a refreshed youth agenda for the Council of Europe needs to give stronger and greater attention to the triple, but related, themes of mobility, faith and generation.
21. At the turn of the millennium, there was increasing mobility of young people especially from European Union countries. Such “positive” mobility was largely concerned with leisure time travel or with greater access to learning opportunities in other countries. That scenario has rapidly changed. Notwithstanding the legitimate economic mobility of young people (to work in other countries, largely in the service and welfare sectors, or in the economic sectors of “packing, picking and plucking”), there is now serious concern about “negative” mobility arising from the illegal trafficking in young women for prostitution and illegal economic migration, significantly by younger workers.
22. This mobility is accompanied by friction associated with differences in faith and culture, as well as predictable conflict arising from (usually false) beliefs that new migrants are taking available jobs or suppressing wage levels. Either way, the complex features of mobility spill over into challenges around acceptance and tolerance of greater diversity – within a post-11 September climate of “fear”. Thus, issues of faith, and related issues of culture, style, identity and behaviour – whether under the “banner” of Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism or something else – have become more prominent. The numerous Parliamentary Assembly debates and the Council of Europe’s White Paper on Intercultural Dialogue are especially significant here.
23. Slightly further removed is the question of generation, though it is also embedded in these matters of mobility and faith. The older generation, though more accustomed to more homogeneous and single faith communities, will need support from a more heterogeneous and diverse population of young people. Young people, however, may increasingly resent the burden they are expected to carry for their ageing neighbours, especially if they feel they were poorly prepared and “nurtured” when they were young. Thus there is some urgency in strengthening inter-generational dialogue and communication and cementing an acceptable inter-generational contract. This has, hitherto, been a neglected area of youth policy in most quarters.
24. The themes of mobility, faith and generation are, it may be suggested, new priorities for the youth agenda of the Council of Europe. They need to be embedded within, informed by, and responsive to some pre-existing debates, notably around youth transition, social inclusion and youth participation. They will need to connect to broader emergent policy concerns around the environment, identities (especially “national” identities and citizenship) and violence (not least violence against women and in the name of “honour”). In particular, the whole youth policy debate needs to be more strongly linked to wider discussions about both children and family policy, for the contemporary paradox is that while “children” often become “youth” more quickly, “young people” often remain more dependent on their families of origin until they are significantly into their young adulthood. This is part of, though also separate from, the necessary policy discussion about youth and generation, and it is also an important thread within the debate about youth mobility, which may result from or contribute to particular forms of (both positive and negative) family relationships, and about faith, where there will be different approaches both to child development and to family responsibility.

7 So how should the youth agenda be put into practice?

25. The Council of Europe has been in the vanguard of progressive and effective strategies for involving young people in the shaping and implementation of its work programme. For over three decades it has constructed its management practice on the principle of co-management – through the shared decision making between a governmental side and one represented by youth organisations. This model is one that has yet to be emulated more widely, despite the ever-increasing momentum of the youth participation agenda, but it is one that is applied at all levels within the policy and practice of the Youth Directorate.
26. There are always, however, questions and dilemmas about the purpose, practice and outcomes of youth participation. The legendary “ladder of participation” suggests the various steps between complete tokenism and authentic engagement. This was perhaps helpful once, but the picture is now even more complex, with a lack of clarity between involvement, engagement, consultation, decision making and so on.
27. Though these issues cannot be debated in depth here, they merit a little further commentary. There remain deep concerns about the socioeconomic profile of the young people who become involved in decision-making structures at whatever level, and especially at the European level: the structure and nature of the work of European institutions inevitably privileges young people who are well educated, articulate, able to work in foreign languages and self-assured. Youth representatives are requested to adapt to established institutional and bureaucratic “adult ways” of working and discussing in order to be taken seriously. There are always questions about the stages at which young people are engaged or become involved. Youth organisations, of course, would say that they should be involved throughout, but policy makers are often agonising as to whether such involvement should be front or back loaded – defining the landscape and mapping the intent or, conversely, reflecting on effectiveness and identifying weaknesses to be rectified in the future. There are, of course, many other points in between. And there will always be discussions about the most appropriate forms and mechanisms for bringing young people to the table: although most leap uncritically to a position around democratic representation often to the detriment of the debate, there is also a case to be made for some level of “categorical representation”, so that under-represented categories of young people (such as school drop-outs, young people with disabilities, or young people from the public care sector) at least have a chance of making their experiences known and their perspectives understood.
28. The Council of Europe has systematically pushed forward the involvement and participation of young people from diverse cultural, social and economic backgrounds in its youth activities. This is clearly reflected in the programmes of the European Youth Centres and the European Youth Foundation. The 1995 All Different, All Equal campaign opened new paths of co-operation with a large range of disadvantaged young people including those facing multiple discrimination. The diversity in the activities is not necessarily reflected in the co-management structures, there are, however, still many questions left unresolved.

8 Residual dilemmas

29. Though particular attention has been given so far in this report to issues around youth participation, there are a number of other critical “residual” issues that demand attention in any future youth agenda of the Council of Europe.
30. The absence of “disadvantaged” youth from youth activity in the Council of Europe has routinely been observed and regretted. The issue may lie more between young people who have a (democratic) voice and those who remain silent: the former will react to opportunities made available in the youth field, the latter need a more proactive strategy directed towards them.
31. The issue of “autonomy versus support” has already been raised. Historically, there have been too many youth initiatives that have set up young people to fail. Finding and striking the right balance between the provision of secure foundations and access to free space for autonomy and creativity demands a skilled judgment – whether in the planning and implementation of a training course or in the promotion of youth entrepreneurship.
32. Similarly, at all levels, a Europe characterised by youth mobility and diversity calls for both sensitivity and conviction in how best to balance a culturally tolerant and acceptant multiculturalism with the application of a range of overarching universal standards. It is rather easy to speak of an all-embracing hospitality; it is far more difficult to identify the boundaries of tolerance and the lines that need to be drawn.
33. Another difficult, also sometimes viewed as unpalatable, decision is how to find the path between completely voluntary engagement by young people and involving them through non-compulsory but strongly persuasive, even nominally “coercive”, tactics. If engagement remains softly voluntary (involving only those who actively seek to participate), research tells us that it will be the most confident and already included who will take the lion’s share, leaving more marginalised young people even more firmly at the edge.
34. This leads to further questions between “problem-oriented” and “opportunity-focused” youth policy. While the latter may be a more desirable starting point, it is the former that is often the default position, yet there may be an opportunity-based path leading from that corner. This is the stuff of targeted prevention programmes around youth crime, for example. A problem-oriented youth policy focus does not always have to be punitive.
35. Finally, there is always the question of how youth policy and practice is constructed. Despite the contemporary rhetoric of the “evidence base” and the invoking of the “magic triangle” of research, policy and practice, the honest answer is that youth policy derives from a range of pragmatic circumstances and political preferences as much as from scientific evidence about young people. The contribution of youth research is partial and selective at most.
36. These points are raised not to undermine the trajectories of the youth agenda within the Council of Europe but to illuminate the fact that they do not always rest on solid ground and established knowledge. That should not necessarily be a problem. Indeed, it can be a strength – the work of the Council of Europe in general rests less on some kind of technical rationality and more on a commitment to a set of principles and values. In the youth field, this is rightly framed around questions of access, inclusion and opportunity.

9 Effective structures

37. The Council of Europe has already proved its commitment and effectiveness in taking forward its youth agenda in partnership through a range of collaborative activity. It has forged links and co-operation agreements (at different levels of formality and with different levels of support) with other international and regional organisations, with youth research networks and with pan-European youth mobility, information and youth centre networks.
38. Most significantly, it has cemented its partnership with the European Union which, amongst many other components of current practice, is taking forward the European Knowledge Centre for Youth Policy and the co-operation programmes in the Euro-Mediterranean region.
39. These, and other links, clearly have enormous potential in strengthening the horizontal chain of youth policy. The risk they carry is of the dilution of the cherished values of the Council of Europe in general and of the Youth Directorate in particular. It will be important in the future to ascertain the extent to which various “partners” attached to the Council of Europe youth policy agenda adhere to such values and principles in their own policy and practice.
40. Within the Council of Europe, there is clearly a need for stronger links between the Youth Directorate and other directorates. This relates for example to the area of children and family policy. It applies also to education for democratic citizenship and to the network of Schools for Political Studies. This may be self-evident and is consistent with calls for “cross-sectoral” working and “transversality”. There is an a priori case for cross-fertilisation and complementarity, but not necessarily for complete connection.
41. Finally, there is the political role of parliamentarians both nationally and in the Parliamentary Assembly. The Assembly has been particularly active in the youth field (see appendix). The main focus of its attention has been to encourage the participation of young people, whether in youth organisations, in youth parliaments or as young political leaders. The Assembly should reassert its interest. Members should also encourage national parliamentarians to be active in this sector. It has become patently clear from the 15 international reviews of national youth policy conducted by the Council of Europe since 1997 (Finland, the Netherlands, Sweden, Spain, Romania, Estonia, Luxembourg, Lithuania, Malta, Norway, Cyprus, Slovakia, Armenia, Hungary and Latvia) that political championship and drive is essential to the shaping and implementation of youth policy. There is absolutely no reason why this should be different within the Council of Europe. Parliamentarians need not only to champion the cause but they also have to anticipate the unforeseen consequences of good thinking and recognise the need to reflect on deficiencies and to reconstruct from time to time.
42. The substantive work on this will be done outside of the political arena, by professionals and youth organisations, but ultimately it requires renewed political endorsement when the issues come around again. Thus parliamentarians with an interest in youth policy have a pivotal role, both in their home countries and in relation to the youth agenda of the Council of Europe. Without the impetus, anchor and umbrella that they provide, the advocacy for that agenda – whether by youth organisations, government officials or youth researchers – can prove to be a Sisyphean task.

10 Conclusion

43. This paper, in many respects, endeavours to offer confirmation of the valuable contribution made by the Council of Europe to the youth agenda in Europe over the past thirty years and more. Many of the issues and methods it has pioneered within the values to which it is committed have entered mainstream policy and practice in youth work practice elsewhere at both national and international levels. Young people themselves have often taken those approaches and issues forward in their home countries (and elsewhere) through the desired “multiplier effect”. They have also adapted their methodological learning to the burning issues arising in their immediate context.
44. So there is no need for a quantum leap or paradigm shift into new territory for the 21st century. There is, however, a need for reflection on and renewal of some of the older themes of its policy and practice (not least youth participation), a rebalancing of priorities and the integration of specific challenges (mobility, faith and generation) into a framework whose pillars should be concerned with learning, citizenship, inclusion and safety. With appropriate and timely political championship, these should represent the dynamics of youth policy that can be converted into a more complex mosaic of delivery.

Appendix – Assembly texts and other activities relating to young people

Assembly texts

Order No. 265 (1967) on the study of youth problems in Europe.

Recommendation 531 (1968) on the present crisis of the European society (September 1968, Doc. 2432, rapporteur: Mr Borel; memorandum by Mr Marcel Hicter, consulting expert).

Recommendation 592 (1970) on youth problems in Europe and Order 298 (January 1970, Docs. 2715 and 2610, rapporteur: Mr Borel; memorandum by Mr Marcel Hicter, consulting expert, and 145 collected documents on youth).

Resolution 464 (1970) on the creation of a European Youth Foundation (September 1970, Doc. 2820, rapporteur: Mrs Klee).

Recommendation 758 (1975) and Resolution 590 (1975) on group participation by young people (April 1975, Doc. 3590, rapporteur: Mr Vitter).

Recommendation 776 (1976) on the situation of rural and agricultural youth in Europe (January 1976, Doc. 3706, report of the Committee on Agriculture, rapporteur: Mr Schlingemann; and Doc. 3722, Opinion of the Committee on Culture and Education, rapporteur: Mr Reale).

Recommendation 885 (1979) on the Council of Europe cultural identity card (November 1979, Doc. 4414, rapporteur: Mr Lambiotte).

Recommendation 897 (1980) on educational visits and pupil exchanges between European countries (July 1980, Doc. 4541, rapporteur: Mrs Mantzoulinou).

Recommendation 902 (1980) on youth co-operation in Europe (September 1980, Doc. 4587, rapporteur: Mr Foulkes).

Opinion on Resolution 144 (1983) adopted by the 18th Session of the CLRAE on young people in towns (March 1984, Doc. 5185, rapporteur: Mr G. Müller) (Doc. 5152, for the record).

Recommendation 989 (1984) on the fight against drug abuse and trafficking (October 1984, Doc. 5276 of the Committee on Social and Health Questions, Amendments Nos. 7 to 9); Opinion of the Committee on Culture and Education (Doc. 5284, rapporteur: Mr Antretter).

Recommendation 1019 (1985) on the participation of young people in political and institutional life (September 1985, Doc. 5462, rapporteur: Mr Martinez).

Recommendation 1023 (1986) on youth unemployment (January 1986, Doc. 5508 by the Committee on Economic Affairs and Development, and Doc. 5503 by the Social and Health Affairs Committee).

Resolution 871 (1987) (paragraph 5) on the implementation of the Colombo report (January 1987, Doc. 5668, report of the Political Affairs Committee).

Order No. 441 (1988) on the Assembly and young people in Europe (June 1988, Doc. 5905, rapporteur: Mr Adriaensens).

Order No. 454 (1990) on youth representation at national level (July 1990, Doc. 6257, rapporteur: Mr Kollwelter).

Recommendation 1191 (1992) on exchanges involving young workers after the revolutionary changes of 1989 and Order No. 480 (1992) (September 1992, Doc. 6665, rapporteur: Mrs Terborg) (Committee of Ministers replies: January 1992 (AS/Cult(44)32) and March 1994, Doc. 7049).

Recommendation 1292 (1996) on young people in high-level sport (March 1996, Doc. 7459, rapporteur: Mr Elo) (Committee of Ministers reply: June 1997, Doc. 7844).

Recommendation 1293 and Order No. 517 (1996) on the European Youth Centre in Budapest (March 1996, Doc. 7501, rapporteur: Sir Russell Johnston) (Committee of Ministers reply: September 1996, Doc. 7642).

Order No. 523 (1996) on the situation of young people in Europe: marginalised youth (June 1996, Doc. 7574, rapporteur: Mr Elo).

Recommendation 1304 (1996) on the future of social policy (September 1996, Doc. 7634 by the Social, Health and Family Affairs Committee; and Opinion by the Committee on Culture and Education, Doc. 7652, rapporteur: Mr Elo).

Recommendation 1315 (1997) on the minimum age for voting (January 1997, Doc. 7724, rapporteur: Mr Kollwelter) (Committee of Ministers reply: January 1999, Doc. 8306).

Recommendation 1364 (1998) and Resolution 1152 (1998) on European youth co-operation and recent proposals for structural change (March 1998, Doc. 8016, rapporteurs: Mrs Plechatá and Mr Jakic) (Committee of Ministers reply: February 1999, Doc. 8333).

Opinion No. 215 (2000) on the draft convention on the promotion of transnational long-term voluntary service for young people (January 2000, rapporteur: Mr Dumitrescu, Doc. 8597).

Recommendation 1530 (2001) on the situation and prospects of young people in rural areas in Europe (June 2001, Doc. 9099, rapporteur for oral opinion: Mr Kalkan, Committee on the Environment and Agriculture) (Committee of Ministers reply: 19 September 2001, Doc. 9219).

Recommendation 1552 (2002) on vocational training of young asylum seekers (March 2002, Doc. 9382, rapporteur for opinion: Mrs Schicker; report by the Committee on Migration, Doc. 9380) (Committee of Ministers reply: 19 June 2003, Doc. 9839).

Resolution 1307 (2002) on sexual exploitation of children: zero tolerance (September 2002, Doc. 9575, rapporteur for opinion: Baroness Hooper; report by the Social, Health and Family Affairs Committee, Doc 9535).

Recommendation 1585 (2002) on youth policies in the Council of Europe (November 2002, Doc. 9617, rapporteur: Mrs Agudo) (Committee of Ministers reply: 24 September 2003, Doc. 9931).

Recommendation 1632 (2003) on teenagers in distress (November 2003, Doc. 10000, rapporteur for opinion: Mr Shybko; report by the Social, Health and Family Affairs Committee, Doc. 9986, rapporteur: Mr Ouzky).

Recommendation 1717 (2005) on education for leisure activities (September 2005, Doc. 10647, rapporteur: Mr Smorawinski) (Committee of Ministers reply: 3 May 2006, Doc. 10929 of 10 May 2006).

Other activities

Conference of Young Political Leaders: The New Europe: Europe and North America Helping Democracy in the Transition Countries (Strasbourg, April 1994, AS/Cult/JS(1994)5)

Pan-European Round Tables of Parliamentarians and Youth Representatives

1st: The Contribution of Young People to Furthering East-West Co-operation in Europe (Strasbourg, October 1988, AS/Cult/JS(40)5)

2nd: Youth Mobility in Europe (Strasbourg, April 1990, AS/Cult(41)38)

3rd: Tolerance and Ethnic Minorities (Luxembourg, October 1991, AS/Cult(43)30)

4th: Strategies for Combating Xenophobia (Strasbourg, July 1993; AS/Cult(44)50)

5th: European Youth Policy (Strasbourg, October 1994, AS/Cult(1994)27)


Reporting committee: Committee on Culture, Science and Education.

Reference to committee: Doc. 11455 rev., Reference No. 3403 of 21 January 2008.

Draft resolution and draft recommendation unanimously adopted by the committee on 2 September 2008.

Members of the committee: Mrs Anne Brasseur (Chairperson), Baroness Hooper, Mr Detlef Dzembritzki, Mr Mehmet Tekelioğlu (Vice-Chairpersons), Mr Remigijus Ačas, Mr Vicenç Alay Ferrer, Mr Kornél Almássy, Mrs Aneliya Atanasova, Mr Lokman Ayva, Mr Rony Bargetze, Mr Walter Bartoš, Mr Radu Mircea Berceanu, Mr Levan Berdzenishvili, Mrs Oksana Bilozir, Mrs Guðfinna Bjarnadóttir, Mrs Ana Blatnik, Mrs Maria Luisa Boccia (alternate: Mr Stefano Morselli), Mrs Margherita Boniver, Mr Ivan Brajović, Mr Vlad Cubreacov, Mrs Lena Dabkowska-Cichocka (alternate: Mr Dariusz Lipiński), Mr Ivica Dačić, Mr Joseph Debono Grech, Mr Ferdinand Devínsky, Mr Daniel Ducarme (alternate: Mr Hendrik Daems), Mrs Åse Gunhild Woie Duesund, Mrs Anke Eymer, Mr Relu Fenechiu, Mrs Blanca Fernández-Capel, Mr Axel Fischer, Mr Gvozden Srećko Flego, Mr José Freire Antunes, Mrs Ruth Genner (alternate: Mrs Doris Fiala), Mr Ioannis Giannellis-Theodosiadis (alternate: Mr Anastassios Papaligouras), Mr Stefan Glǎvan, Mr Raffi Hovannisian, Mr Rafael Huseynov, Mr Fazail İbrahimli, Mr Mogens Jensen, Mr Morgan Johansson, Mrs Liana Kanelli, Mr Jan Kaźmierczak, Miss Cecilia Keaveney, Mr Ali Rashid Khalil, Mrs Svetlana Khorkina, Mr Serhii Kivalov, Mr Anatoliy Korobeynikov, Mrs Elvira Kovács, Mr József Kozma, Mr Jean-Pierre Kucheida, Mr Ertuğrul Kumcuoğlu, Mr Markku Laukkanen, Mr Jacques Legendre, Mr van der Linden, Mrs Milica Marković, Mrs Muriel Marland-Militello, Mr Andrew McIntosh, Mrs Maria Manuela Melo, Mrs Assunta Meloni, Mr Paskal Milo, Mrs Christine Muttonen, Mrs Miroslava Nĕmcová, Mr Edward O’Hara, Mr Kent Olsson, Mr Andrey Pantev, Mrs Antigoni Papadopoulos, Mr Azis Pollozhani, Mrs Majda Potrata, Mrs Adoración Quesada Bravo, Mr Paul Rowen, Mrs Anta Rugāte, Mr Indrek Saar, Mrs Ana Sánchez Hernández, Mr André Schneider, Mrs Albertina Soliani, Mr Yury Solonin, Mr Christophe Steiner, Mrs Doris Stump, Mr Valeriy Sudarenkov, Mr Petro Symonenko, Mr Hugo Vandenberghe, Mr Klaas de Vries, Mr Piotr Wach, Mr Wolfgang Wodarg.

NB: The names of those members present at the meeting are printed in bold.

See 33rd Sitting, 1 October 2008 (adoption of the draft recommendation, as amended, and draft resolution); and Recommendation 1844 and Resolution 1630.