For a United Digital Europe

SINGLE NEWS RESOLUTIONSResolution submitted by: Political Commission 2 - Internal European Policies, 

London, March 23rd, 2019

In recent years the development of digital and internet-based technologies has changed nearly all aspects of citizens’ lives. No matter whether in the field of education, governance or the labour market. Data processing and digital tools have significantly changed human habits. With this resolution, JEF Europe aims at creating a federal vision for a Digital Europe that fosters the opportunities offered by digitisation, while it addresses the most pressing issues linked to our technological progress, like unequal access to digital resources and the transformation of the labour market.

 

JEF Europe,

  • Wholeheartedly embracing technological progress and the digital transformation  to serve our society, thus stressing the great potential of a truly European Digital Single Market;
  • SINGLE NEWS RESOLUTIONSHaving adopted the resolution on “The Human Right for Privacy in the Digital Age” and reaffirming the therein mentioned digital rights and ideas proposed to strengthen their protection;
  • SINGLE NEWS RESOLUTIONSWelcoming the adoption of the Geo Blocking regulation (2018/302) which addresses unjustified online sales discrimination based on customers' nationality, place of residence or place of establishment within the internal market;
  • Alarmed by the unsustainable disparities regarding broadband internet connections, especially in rural areas;
  • Recognising the equally untenable rate of digital illiteracy in Europe;
  • Observing changing work patterns induced by telemediated services that allow for increased relocation of work, crowd-working (sharing economy, human cloud, workforce on demand, digital labour etc.) and self-employment which also necessitate workers’ rights to be updated so as to face the new challenges posed by the digital age;
  • Believing that public services should be broadly accessible and meet today's needs by aiming at being digital, open and cross-border by design;
  • Acknowledging the different levels of national capability and the levels of private sector involvement and preparedness between Member States;
  • Being guided by the Federalist principle according to which a United Digital Europe can only be created when its diversity and subsidiarity are adequately safeguarded;
  • Acknowledging the achievements in the digital single market, such as strengthening citizens’ rights concerning private data in the digital age through the EU General Data Protection Regulation, the abolition of barriers in digital trade through the Directive on e-commerce and the European Union’s combined efforts in ending roaming charges.

 

JEF Europe, therefore,

Completion of a digital single market:

  1. Calls upon the European Council and the European Parliament to push for ending unjustified territory-based discrimination of mobile Europeans, e.g. by enlarging the scope of the geo-blocking regulation. Easy and legal access to digital content under fair conditions for consumers and creators alike all over the EU must constitute a main pillar of a United Digital Europe;
  2. Requests further European harmonisation of digital consumer protection that guarantees the free and equal choice of goods, services and digital content, platforms and traders, payment methods, delivery operators and internet access providers;
  3. Encourages the EU as well as its Member States to increase funding as well as to create incentives for private investments for improved broadband infrastructure, helping all citizens, no matter their place of residence, to have access to high-speed broadband internet access;
  4. Calls for updated competition guidelines and rules to increase European competitiveness and to allow new emerging companies to compete against established platforms;

E-governance:

  1. Supports open, secure and collaborative public services in their relations with citizens and businesses. All institutions of the EU and its Member States should seize the opportunities provided by e-governance to consistently increase the efficiency and effectiveness of their public administrations, especially by addressing accessibility for cross-border citizens or those with disabilities;
  2. Supports the utilisation of e-governance tools to increase interaction with citizens, and to facilitate the participation and involvement of citizens in the decision-making process;
  3. Welcomes all efforts to establish platforms or infrastructure for executing e-elections; whether on European or national level;
  4. Further calls on the Member States to study all the possibilities of e-elections or to establish a high-level expert group on that matter;
  5. Solemnly affirms that the inherently and increasingly homogeneous structures of our digital lives must not threaten the diversity from which Europe draws its whole strength;
  6. Calls for the extension of democratic rights and safeguards to the digital area.

Digitising the Labour Market:

  1. Urges digital literacy skills as well as privacy awareness to be put at the heart of both formal and non-formal education;
  2. Supports initiatives aimed at ensuring a sustainable framework for lifelong learning and continuous reskilling/upskilling of workforce as an answer to some challenges brought by the digitalisation of the labour market;
  3. Recommends the recognition of non-formal learning experience and soft skills essential for adaptation to the changing labour market;
  4. Encourages the EU as well as its Member States to support lifelong learning education and training on digital technologies at all career stages to adapt people’s skills for the digital transformation, extending financial support (e.g. EASI) and through, for instance, subsidised/tax-incentivised on-the-job training;
  5. Calls upon EU Member States and EU Institutions to carry European labour rights to the digital age whilst strengthening the right to privacy. This includes adapting welfare systems and health and safety regulations to different types of digital workers’ needs concerning ergonomics and physical and psychosocial risks;
  6. Advocates for a right to a flexible working environment and to telework where possible, be it online or offline, thereby empowering employees with disabilities and parents temporarily focusing on their families, and to encourage and intensify the use of ICT and new forms of e-work;
  7. Encourages the European Commission to present legislation that implements the “right to disconnect” in companies, which protects a worker’s right not to have to engage in work-related electronic communications outside of working hours.

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