The Eu Can Do It! Petition to the European Parliament for a common response to the Covid-19 crisis will be presented on April 30th by Virginia Fiume, Coordinator of Eumans – the citizens movement created by Marco Cappato – and first signatory, in the morning session of the competent committee.
The main request is to “keep the issues open” by communicating them to the foreign affairs, research, environment and health committees with the ultimate goal of generating a resolution in the plenary. It would be a historic decision for the European strategy to fight pandemics to come about through a petition written by citizens.
“In a moment in which Trump announces that he will cancel funding for the WHO – says Marco Cappato, founder of Eumans – our petition calls for the European Union to do the opposite. International organisations are the most appropriate instrument to fight global phenomena such as the pandemic. We need to increase aid to international cooperation for vaccine research and access to essential drugs indicated by the WHO; to strengthen databases allowing updates on the most recent medical discoveries to start clinical trials in several countries; to strengthen health structures in low-income countries. With an effort in this direction the EU could become an example of democratic leadership in international institutions, as opposed to the nationalist retreat of the United States and the authoritarian models of China and Russia”.
Conceived during the first meeting of the Council on Participatory Democracy and Launched by Eumans, together with Science for Democracy, Associazione Luca Coscioni and other organisations from all over Europe, the petition reached over 7,000 signatures in a month. Among the signatories are Monica Frassoni (former president of the European Greens), former Minister and current member of the Italian government task Enrico Giovannini, Pier Virgilio Dastoli from the European Movement, Iga Kamocka from the polish Robert Schuman foundation, Alberto Alemanno from the Good Lobby, Ulrike Guerot of the European Democracy Lab, former European Commissioner Violeta Bulc, MEPs Eleonora Evi, Daniela Rondinelli, Brando Benifei, Massimiliano Smeriglio, and many more. Even Nobel Prize for Medicine Richard Roberts joined the supporters, together with a network of European mayors led by Palermo mayor Leoluca Orlando, and Jacek Majchrowski, Mayor of Krakow (Poland), Gabriela Staszkiewicz, Mayor of the City of Cieszyn (Poland), Basílio Horta, Mayor of Sintra (Portugal), Rui Moreira, Mayor of Porto (Portugal), Emil Boc, Mayor of Cluj-Napoca (Romania), Joan Ribó Canut, Mayor of Valencia (Spain), Christos Doulkeridis, Mayor of Ixelles, Region Bruxelles capitale (Belgium), Michele Abbaticchio, Mayor of Bitonto (Italy), Enea Emiliani, Sindaco di Sant'Agata sul Santerno (Italy).
The five main pillars of the document:
- giving a systemic and common response of the European Union to the Covid-19 crisis;
- enhancing reforming the EU healthcare and civic protection instruments and competences to respond to outbreaks;
- implementing all economic, financial and monetary policy measures to allow the EU to unlock resources and common measures to support citizens with the consequences of the pandemic, including measures for the mutualisation of public debts, own resources for the EU budget, according to a radical ecological reform of European taxation (including the acceleration of the Green New Deal);
- turning the first stages of the Conference on the Future of Europe into a public online assembly and reshape its goals;
- contributing to a global mechanism to prevent and face epidemics and pandemics
Another key point of the petition is to relaunch the Conference on the Future of Europe which should have started in May. “Involving citizens on European proposals to start back – Cappato continues – is crucial to avoid what is happening in Italy, where decisions are taken by task forces and steering committees without any transparency on the definition of goals and methods. A Conference on the Future of Europe based on innovative criteria of direct democracy, such as the consultation of randomly selected citizens, must be convened in the next months with the ambitious goal of promoting Treaty reform”.