May 9 2017

Europeday: Celebrating a success story in need of a fresh start

Category: News, Press Release


Brussels, May 9, 2017.
67 years after the Schuman Declaration, the Declaration that kick-started the post-war Franco-German relationship and European integration, young Europeans across the continent celebrate the achievements of the European Union - and remind that changes are needed.

2017 has so far proven to be a rollercoaster year: many historical moments and turning points for Europe and the EU have happened and are scheduled to happen. So far, various national elections have attracted European-wide attention: anyone claiming there was no European public space should be reminded of the intensity with which the national campaigns and debates are followed, the last example being probably the most illustrative with the follow-up of the campaign of the French elections and results all over the continent.

And Europe has proven to be resilient so far in 2017. Nevertheless, these small victories cannot be a reason for us to sit back and enjoy the ride; they only give us a moment to breathe before we need to take up the battle again. The relief felt thanks to Emmanuel Macron’s victory over far-right populism in France this week might be short-lived if France and Germany are now not coming together to find compromise and progress. The EU still needs to become more democratic - no matter if it’s in the Member States or if it’s on EU level. Urgent economic reforms need to be made to the Eurozone to start growth and end youth unemployment, environmental policies need to be prioritised for the EU to lead again on climate change, freedom of speech and press are challenged in some countries, and the current EU migration policy is still flawed by a lack of solidarity amongst EU Member States, a lack of common funding of common European goods and most importantly the lack of respect for international humanitarian law.

Therefore, JEFers across the continent will be celebrating and will discuss with citizens what #ourEurope should be: you will be able to meet them during debates, booths, street actions, and more. Around 30 local sections have also signed up to #ourEurope challenges, little twists that adds a pan-European notion to their events a pan-European.

The Young European Federalists (JEF) Europe is a transnational, transpartisan youth NGO, active in more than 30 countries. Our members are active for a united, federal Europe, based on democracy, subsidiarity and respect for human rights. Interested and want to become active in these turbulent times? You can find the JEF section closest to you here.

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info@jef.eu