Freedom, Justice & Security
Despite being amongst the newest fields of EU action, the goal of building an area of freedom, security and justice, has already resulted in significant legislative and political action since t the Maastricht Treaty was adopted in the 1990s and Justice and Home affairs was made the third pillar of the European Union.
Action in this field arose from the need to improve police and judicial co-operation following the opening of borders and the increasing ease of free movement. Early priorities were focussed on combating crime and dealing with immigration. However, with the adoption of the Treaty of Amsterdam, the mission to develop an area of freedom, security and justice has truly taken off.
Today, the EU has a broad JHA competence covering such matters as asylum and immigration, organised crime and terrorism, fundamental rights, and criminal and civil justice. The extent of action in the field has resulted in a small European Commission task force being transformed into two fully fledged Directorates General covering Home Affairs and Justice.
A large number of European Union Agencies, such as the Fundamental Rights Agency, Europol and Eurojust, have been established to oversee and drive forward a number of policy areas, the EU has incorporated the European Convention of Human Rights into EU primary law, and most aspects of justice and home affairs are now subject to qualified majority voting and co-decision with the European Parliament.
The advancement of EU justice and home affairs has seen a great number of successes and the EU continues to make progress, seeking balanced, evidenced based solutions. This requires detailed research, the collection and analysis of data, identification of problems and the development of solutions, and assessment of the potential impact of policies and of their implementation.
Projects that Milieu hace carried out in this area include:
Study on The European legal framework on hate speech, blasphemy and freedom of expression, European Parliament, 2015: Following the terrorist attacks in France and Denmark, a political consensus emerged about the necessity of addressing the threat of violent radicalisation and further terrorist attacks. The European Parliament, in its commitment to accurately map the suitability of the EU legislative framework in the field of hate speech, blasphemy and freedom of expression, launched a study. More info...
Study on case law relating to trafficking of human beings for labour exploitation, DG Home Affairs, 2014-2015: The overall objective of this project was to provide the European Commission, Member States and stakeholders with the necessary knowledge on THB for forced labour case-law, and to analyse the prosecution practices across Member States pertaining to this phenomenon. The findings subsequently fed into EU and national strategies addressing the issue. More info...