RAXEN is a project established in 2000 by EUMC - European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia. It initially included the 15 Member States of the European Union. Subsequently, it gradually expanded along with the enlargement of the EU and currently functions in all 27 Member States of united Europe. It is coordinated by the European Union Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA), into which the EUMC was transformed in March 2007. In Poland the program is being implemented since the fall of 2003 by the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights. The HFHR serves as the National Focal Point in the RAXEN network.
National Focal Points, the activity of which is the foundation for the entire project, collect information on the subject matter of racism and xenophobia in their countries and prepare various types of reports and analyses. Organizations - usually nongovernmental ones - as well as research institutions or public institutions - selected by means of public tender - serve as the focal points. On the domestic level they cooperate with entities that from different perspectives deal with the subject matter of national and ethnic minorities, migration, discrimination, xenophobia, etc. Thereby, they establish a peculiar network that collects information about the dynamics of these phenomena. Hence the acronym of the project - RAXEN is short for its full name Racism and Xenophobia Network.
The studies prepared by the National Focal Points are used to prepare comparative (benchmarking) publications presenting and describing phenomena and trends appearing in all European Union Member States [resent publications: Muslims in the European Union: Discrimination and Islamophobia, Trends and Developments 1997-2005 - Combating Ethnic and Racial Discrimination and Promoting Equality in the European Union; other EUMC/FRA publications can be downloaded HERE]. Up till the end of 2005, the reports prepared by the National Focal Points were not made public. Currently, the FRA permits the focal points to publish national reports, but only after the publication of the pan-European report.
The most important studies prepared by National Focal Points:
The most extensive study prepared annually. So far it covered five issues: legislation, education, housing, employment and race-related crime. From 2007, the reports will also include the topics of health and social welfare. The aim of the National Annual Report is to describe the situation in the abovementioned spheres of life, as well as to present the most important actions taken in particular areas, with consideration for the so called best practices.
National Annual Reports prepared by the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights:
Comparative (benchmarking) reports prepared by the EUMC can be found HERE.
The second most extensive study prepared annually. As opposed to the National Annual Report, which includes a fixed set of issues, each thematic study touches on a different problem. In 2004, this was the education of the Roma, in 2005 - organizations working in accordance with Art. 7.2 of the Racial Equality Directive, and in 2006 - trends in the development of anti-discrimination policy.
Thematic studies prepared by the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights:
2004: Roma in Public Education
Comparative studies elaborated by the EUMC can be found HERE.
Since 2005, National Focal Points bi-monthly prepare bulletins, in which they run up-to-date information on racism, xenophobia, national and ethnic minorities, migrants and aliens. The bulletins include inter alia the findings of new scientific and statistical research, as well as news on cases of race-related violence and on public debates. Information delivered by NFPs becomes the input for collective bulletins published by the FRA.
Collective bulletins elaborated by the EUMC/FRA can be found HERE .