CEDAG adopts manifesto for the European elections

Sunday, 01 October 2017 00:00

As representatives of civil society organisations from 8 different countries of the European Union, gathered ahead of the forthcoming European elections of 2019, we call on European citizens and leaders to :

1. Create a strong associative culture and fight against social inequalities and solidarity, with a status of the European association with ambitious general principles and minimum rules. According to Articles 7 and 11 TEU, the European association is a primordial issue too long ignored and misunderstood by the European institutions. 2. Recognize the key role of civil society organisations in fostering citizenship and participatory democracy, which is a central feature of the European model. This should yield at European as well as at national level ;

3. Reinforce the role of the European Parliament (EP), as the only European body with democratic legitimacy. In particular, the European Parliament should be recognized a right of initiative ; the European Council should be accountable before the Parliament ; the EP should have the final say on the European budget.

4. Reinforce the status of the social governance in EU decision-making. For the first time since its creation, the European Union is presently facing divergent evolutions instead of achieving convergence, whereas its founding treaty calls for an “ever closer union between the peoples of Europe”. Therefore, action should be taken not only in case of “excessive economic imbalances”, but also in case of “excessive social imbalances”.

5. Consider social expenditures as an investment, in line with the Social Investment Package recently adopted by the European institutions.

6. Deliver on §§ 1 to 3 of art. 11 TUE on participatory democracy, whereas until now only § 4 on the so-called “citizens initiative” has been implemented.

7. Recognize social and health services of general interest as a major feature of the European social model and secure their funding ; recognize as well the key role of non-profit service providers (NPSP) in their implementation, without prejudice of the legitimate role of public service providers in this respect. NPSP’s are innovative, flexible, provide targeted and tailored solutions to social needs.

8. Effectively take the necessary steps to decrease the number of people living at risk of poverty by 20 million between 2008 and 2018, according the EU’s 2020 strategy. Poverty is a scandal ; it is a breach against human dignity and human rights and should not be tolerated anymore.

9. Ensure that the European Union joins the Council of Europe, in accordance with the Lisbon Treaty

Brussels, October 1st, 2017