Sven Giegold
Mitglied der Grünen/EFA-Fraktion im Europaparlament

Sprecher Europagruppe Grüne

Appeal “Let’s change Europe”

MEPs launch online appeal for fair economic and social policies in a time of crisis

A group of MEPs today launched the cross-party appeal “Let’s change Europe” criticising current economic and social policies in the EU and calling for a change of course. It’s the economic governance package, in particular, that’s in the line of fire. It is described as an unprecedented challenge to the basic values and principles that underlie our shared future: solidarity, social justice, equal opportunities and sustainable development. The appeal advocates an alternative to the austerity measures put forward by right-wing politicians in Europe.

The online appeal was initiated by Green MEP Sven Giegold and S&D MEP Udo Bullmann and can be signed at http://www.changeforeurope.eu. The appeal has already been signed by many high-profile figures, among them Greens/EFA co-chairs Dany Cohn-Bendit and Rebecca Harms, former prime ministers, academics, trade union and civil society figures (1)
The appeal says: “Ideological choices – to be taken in the name of the budget discipline needed in a time of crisis – will endanger both social cohesion between Europeans and our ability together to bring about an ecological transformation of our economies. In particular, these choices run the risk of sacrificing a whole generation of young people in a large number of member states. These young people are hit very hard by unemployment. They feel more and more excluded and rejected instead of being able to play a full part in building their own future.”

Commenting on the launch of the appeal, Green MEP Sven Giegold said:
“The legislation currently under discussion for a reform of the euro zone endangers social solidarity and the ecological modernisation of our society. Under the pretext of a so-called ‘responsible’ budget policy, Conservatives and Liberals contest European solidarity. It’s only with responsible and fair policies that we can avoid sliding back into the times of national egoism, social injustice and extremism in Europe.”

(1) The first signatories of the appeal:

  • Rebecca Harms (Co-President of the Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament)
  • Daniel Cohn-Bendit (Co-President of the Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament)
  • Martin Schulz (Leader of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists & Democrats in the European Parliament)
  • Poul Nyrup Rasmussen (President of the Party of European Socialists, former Prime Minister of Denmark)
  • Philippe Lamberts (Co-chair of the European Green Party)
  • Monica Frassoni (Co-chair of the European Green Party)
  • Jacques Delors (former President of the European Commission )
  • Bernadette Ségol (General Secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation)
  • Sigmar Gabriel (Leader of the SPD, Germany)
  • Martine Aubry (Leader of French Socialist Party)
  • Claudia Roth (Bundesvorsitzende Bündnis 90/Die Grünen, Germany)
  • Pierluigi Bersani (General Secretary of Partito Democratico, Italy)
  • Elio Di Rupo (President of Belgian Socialist Party)
  • Cécile Duflot (National Secretary, Europe écologie/les verts, France)
  • Caroline Gennez (President of sp.a, Belgium)
  • Sarah Turine (Co-Chair, Belgian Green Party Ecolo)
  • Wouter Van Besien (Chair, Belgian Green Party (Groen)
  • Massimo D’Alema (President of the FEPS and Former Italian Prime Minister)
  • Jürgen Trittin (Group leader of the Greens in the German Bundestag)
  • Mário Soares (former President and former Prime Minister of Portugal)
  • Stephen Hughes (Vice-chair of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament)