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Norway

Norway

4. Social Inclusion

4.5 Initiatives promoting social inclusion and raising awareness

On this page
  1. Intercultural awareness
  2. Young people's rights
  3. Key initiatives to safeguard democracy and prevent radicalisation leading to violent extremism

Intercultural awareness

The Ministry of Education and Research is responsible for state support to seven independent foundations that promote democratic values ​​and attitudes, especially aimed at children and young people:

Common to these foundations is that they contribute documentation, research, teaching and dissemination in the areas of democracy, peace and human rights, minorities, and genocide. Research or teaching is a central part of the core business at all the centres and one of the conditions for receiving state support.

The Norwegian Center for Holocaust and Minority Studies leads a government funded project for the prevention of anti-Semitism, racism and undemocratic attitudes in schools, DEMBRA. The project springs from the assumption that participation and knowledge based reflection are key factors in preventing group hatred and attitudes of exclusion. Schools are guided in developing local action plans for prevention, based on local surveys and the teachers’ own experiences. Knowledge based teacher courses are offered at all the participating schools.

Young people's rights

The Convention on the Rights of the Child was incorporated into Norwegian law through the Human Rights Act, which entered into force on 1 October 2003. The Convention on the Rights of the Child thus applies as Norwegian law and has precedence if any conflict should arise between the Convention and other statutory laws.

Ung.no the state's information channel for young people aged 13–20. Ung.no is based on Articles 13 and 17 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which state that children and young people have the right to information, and that the state shall ensure this. The website aims to provide young people with easy access to quality-assured information about rights, duties and opportunities.

The Ombudsperson for Children is an advocate for children and young people’s rights. The Norwegian Ombudsperson for Children was the world’s first Ombudsperson for Children. The duties of the Ombudsperson is to ensure that the opinions of children and young people are heard and that their rights are upheld.

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has not been incorporated into Norwegian law, but Norway has adopted a number of legislative, policy and administrative measures such as:

  • The Equality and Anti-Discrimination Act in January 2018;
  • The action plan for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex persons on safety, diversity and openness (2017–2020), which features a programme aimed at incorporating issues relating to disability, sexuality and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex persons into the online information service run by the Directorate for Children, Youth and Family Affairs;
  • The strategy to prevent hate speech (2016–2020), aimed at combating hate speech based on disability, among other issues;
  • The Patients’ and Users’ Rights Act, in 2015, establishing in law the right to user-controlled personal assistance.

StoppHatprat/ No Hate Speech Movement launched in Norway on Safer Internet Day in February 2014 and is supported by the Ministry of Children and Families. The movement consists of youth ambassadors who run practitioner networks in human rights education against hate speech for youth workers, teachers and youth leaders about. StoppHatprat has an open youth network for organizations and individuals who support the movement's purpose The Norwegian Handicap Association hosts the campaign, receives or reports on funds and is the employer of the two campaign advisers who coordinate the movement.The movement is part of the European No Hate Speech Movement, a movement started by the Council of Europe's Youth Department in 2013 and which has had committees in over 40 countries.

The United Nations Association of Norway (UNA) aims to increase the knowledge on the UN, human rights and international issues in Norway. Target groups are teachers, students, the press and the general population. UNA Norway is mostly financed by Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Human Rights Academy is a non-governmental organization that works to strengthen respect for the international human rights in Norway and abroad. They offer lectures, workshops and courses on a variety of topics on human rights, multicultural understanding and peaceful conflict resolution. The main target groups are pupils and students, refugee youth, asylum seekers and teachers. The Human Rights Academy is supported by project funding from different sources such as the Directorate of Immigration, Arts Council Norway/The Cultural Fund, EEA Grants, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and grants from private persons or foundations.

Key initiatives to safeguard democracy and prevent radicalisation leading to violent extremism

The national action plan for the prevention of radicalization and violent extremism (2014). [Handlingsplanen for å forebygge radikalisering og voldelig ekstremisme (2014)] was revised in 2020.

The plan embraces many sectors and services, and it has a particular focus on prevention. Measures are aimed at all forms of extremism through:

  • Better knowledge through research, dialog, and information/teaching resources
  • Better cooperation and coordination, giving the Norwegian Police Security Services a central role
  • Prevent the recruitment to extremist groups, with particular focus on integration/re-integration work
  • Prevent radicalization and recruitment through the internet
  • Increased international cooperation

A national subsidy scheme has been set up by the Ministry of Justice and Public Security to support targeted measures and work in counties and municipalities to prevent radicalization and violent extremism, including extreme Islamism, right-wing extremism, left-wing extremism and anti-state activism. Grants awarded in 2020 amounted to approx. NOK 13,2 million.