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Closing note on the Strategic Initiative with the European Commission to improve the Transparency Register (SI/7/2016/KR)

Giovedì | 27 giugno 2019

The Transparency Register was set up by the European Commission and Parliament in 2011 to allow the public to monitor the activities of interest representatives (or “lobbyists”) who seek to influence the formulation and implementation of EU legislation and policy. Overall, the Register has been successful and while there are gaps, it is improving over time.

In 2016, the Commission organised a public consultation on several proposed reforms aimed at improving the Transparency Register.

In this context, the Ombudsman opened a ‘strategic initiative’, to contribute to this important debate and to monitor developments by writing to the Commission on the issue.

In January 2018, inter-institutional negotiations began between the Parliament, the Council of the EU and the Commission on the Commission’s proposal to revise and improve the Transparency Register. These negotiations have not yet led to a successful outcome.

The Ombudsman encourages the incoming Parliament, the Council and the incoming Commission to renew their efforts to improve the Transparency Register given the importance of this matter for public trust in the EU.

Decisione della Mediatrice europea nell’indagine strategica OI/4/2016/EA relativa al modo in cui la Commissione europea tratta le persone con disabilità nell’ambito del regime comune di assicurazione malattia per il personale dell’UE

Giovedì | 04 aprile 2019

Nel 2015, un comitato delle Nazioni Unite ha rilevato che il regime di assicurazione malattia per i membri del personale dell’UE, il regime comune di assicurazione malattia (RCAM), non è conforme alla Convenzione delle Nazioni Unite sui diritti delle persone con disabilità (CRPD). Il comitato ha raccomandato di rivedere il regime RCAM al fine di offrire una copertura completa per le esigenze sanitarie legate alle disabilità.

Dopo aver ricevuto denunce da parte di membri del personale, che avevano riscontrato problemi nell’ottenere il rimborso completo di spese mediche proprie o dei propri familiari, la Mediatrice ha condotto un’indagine strategica. Ha riscontrato che il mancato intervento della Commissione europea in risposta alla raccomandazione del comitato ha costituito cattiva amministrazione. Pertanto, ha raccomandato alla Commissione di rivedere le norme che disciplinano il regime RCAM. Inoltre, ha presentato alla Commissione una serie di suggerimenti relativi al modo in cui le esigenze delle persone con disabilità vengono contemplate nell’ambito del regime RCAM, nonché alla necessità di formare il personale e di consultare adeguatamente le parti interessate al fine di garantire che detto regime rispecchi le esigenze delle persone con disabilità.

La Commissione ha risposto affermando che rivedrà le norme che disciplinano il regime RCAM e prenderà provvedimenti per dare seguito alla maggior parte dei suggerimenti della Mediatrice.

Poiché la Commissione ha accettato la sua raccomandazione, la Mediatrice ha archiviato la sua indagine strategica. Data l’importanza della questione, chiede alla Commissione di riferire entro sei mesi in merito all’attuazione della raccomandazione. La Mediatrice conferma inoltre il suo suggerimento relativo alla necessità che la Commissione riesamini le proprie norme del 2004 per quanto concerne l’adeguamento alle esigenze del personale con disabilità.

Decision in case 1641/2015/ZA on the European Personnel Selection Office’s refusal to allow the complainant to apply under two concurrent competitions for recruiting translators and failure to explain the reasons for applying this practice

Martedì | 17 luglio 2018

The case concerned the European Personnel Selection Office’s (`EPSO`) practice of not permitting candidates to apply for more than one concurrent recruitment competition for EU civil servants even where they fulfilled the criteria. EPSO refused to allow the complainant to apply under two concurrent competitions for recruiting translators for the EU institutions, and failed to convincingly explain the reasons for applying this practice.

The Ombudsman found that this practice could have the consequence of hindering the recruitment of the most qualified persons and that, accordingly, EPSO should be able to provide convincing reasoning as to why it has this practice. The Ombudsman found that EPSO´s failure to provide such reasoning to the complainant constituted maladministration. She found also that any continuation of the practice, in the absence of solid reasoning, would necessarily also constitute maladministration. The Ombudsman therefore recommended to EPSO that it immediately review its policy in relation to this practice.

In response, EPSO set up an internal reflection group to conduct a detailed impact assessment of any policy change in this area. The assessment will be presented to EPSO's Management Board by December 2018. The Board must take the final decision. As EPSO is acting on her recommendation, the Ombudsman has decided to close the case.

Decision in case 1984/2015/JN on the European Commission’s decision to deem ineligible costs claimed by a partner in an EU-funded project for combatting racism against Roma people

Mercoledì | 23 maggio 2018

The case concerned a decision by the European Commission to deem ineligible certain costs claimed by a non-governmental organisation, which participated in an EU-funded project aimed at combatting racism against Roma people. The complainant argued that the Commission had not properly examined the evidence before determining that the costs were ineligible.

The Ombudsman inquired into the issue and found that there was no maladministration by the Commission.

Decision in case 1333/2015/MDC concerning the decision of the European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO) to exclude the complainant from a competition on the grounds that his diploma was not relevant

Mercoledì | 23 maggio 2018

The complainant was excluded in 2013 from a competition to recruit administrators in the field of audit run by the European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO). He was excluded on the basis that his academic qualifications were not sufficiently relevant to the post advertised. The complainant pointed out in his complaint to the European Ombudsman that several candidates who had been admitted to the same competition in 2010 had diplomas that were the same as, or less relevant than, his diploma. He argued that if the other candidates’ qualifications were sufficient in 2010, then his diploma should be sufficient also in 2013.

The Ombudsman inquired into the issue and found that the 2013 competition was the same competition as that originally run in 2010 and that the same criteria regarding qualifications should apply in 2013 as in 2010. The Ombudsman found maladministration by EPSO and recommended that EPSO ask the Selection Board to revise its decision on the complainant’s qualifications.

EPSO refused to accept the Ombudsman’s recommendation without providing

convincing reasons for its position. The Ombudsman therefore closed the case with a finding of maladministration.