On 11 May 2017, the Council of Europe adopted a decision on signing the Istanbul Convention, international Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence. The Istanbul Convention was presented by the Council of Europe in 2011 and recognised violence against women as a human rights violation. It criminalises the various forms of violence against women and domestic violence and focuses on measures of preventing violence, protecting and supporting victims and witnesses, and prosecuting the perpetrators.

Following the request of the Maltese Presidency of the Council of the EU to provide a research background for Council Conclusions on enhancing the skills of women and men in the EU labour market, the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) released a new report ‘Gender, skills and precarious work in the EU’. The report presents the labour market challenges faced by European women and men with low qualifications and explores the potential for upscaling skills and improvement of identification and validation of skills.

EGITIM SEN keeps on fighting for the respect of human and trade union rights all over the country. "We will win" said Mesut Firat at the opening session of the General Assembly that took place in Ankara from May 26 to 28 with 515 delegates. While pointing out the difficult period  that the education union is going through, especially after the April referendum, Kamuran Karaca, the President of Egitim Sen emphasized the fact that "the organisation has never stopped fighting for democracy, equality and peace...  Anyone who is an opponent to the Turkish authorities is targeted by repressive measures".

On 22-23 May 2017, the workshop “Trade union and Youth – Together. Together to future!” was organised in Minsk under the auspices of the Belarussian Trade Union of Education and Science, BTUWES, ETUCE member organisation in Belarus. Representatives from 15 ETUCE member organisations in Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lithuania, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, Tajikistan and Ukraine participated in the event.

Eurydice has published the 4th edition of the report presenting key data on Teaching Languages at School in Europe. The report shows that language skills are considered an asset: the number of pupils studying foreign languages has increased considerably in recent years with English, French, German and Spanish being the most popular foreign languages. The report shows that students in vocational education and training do not have the same opportunities to learn foreign languages as their peers in general education.

ETUCE, European Director, Susan Flocken, expressed her sincere condolences to colleagues, and those who have been injured in the incident and those who are suffering the loss of a family member in Manchester. Deeply appalled, the European Director said “It is sad to learn that the incidence targeted in particular young people. There are no words to express the deep sadness when children and young people who have all their life ahead of them are torn from the world and for their friends and family to experience such a tragic event”.