Is the EU still the No 1 defender of human rights? Are men and women treated equally? What's the situation of minorities, foreigners and the homeless? Are the elderly treated well in nursing homes? Citizens from across Europe share their hopes and fears w
EUROPEAN UNION - THE HOME OF HUMAN RIGHTS? I think it’s great that we in Europe have come so far on human rights. Democracy was born here many years ago. We have come very far compared with the rest of the world. I really hope it will continue this way. The future looks bright. When it comes to human rights, there's still a lot to be done in Europe for the rights of minorities, and in places where we don't even suspect that human rights might not be respected. I'm thinking about nursing homes, rest homes for the elderly there we could do a lot more. In the countries where I've lived and where I live they are respected. But I know foreigners and the homeless have fewer rights. It's difficult for them to find a job because they don't have a fixed address. It's a vicious circle. If you don't have a home, you can't find a job and you can't get a phone number, so you remain trapped in misery. I can’t think of another motherland of human rights in the world, so I think we’re still doing the best, but we're not doing enough. There are still imbalances in the way men and women are treated. Discrimination persists, and it needs to be addressed. It's up to the governments and the EU institutions to settle this question. On the condition that the new countries - I'm thinking about the Eastern bloc - respect human rights and our laws. There are lots of conflicts in the Balkans and when we hear news from these regions they're never too good. I think the EU is doing enough to improve human rights. But there's room from improvement, more could be done to ensure that people can live in peace in the EU. I think human rights are one of the values that everyone in Europe shares. It's one of the criteria that countries have to meet before joining the EU. In a union that's striving to do so much good and bring peace and democracy, human rights are also a key value that we must share.