Citizens' platform on future of Europe to be up and running on 19 April
This tool will give Europeans more opportunities to make their voice heardEuropost , Brussels
The Executive Board of the Conference on the Future of Europe endorsed the multilingual digital platform to be launched on 19 April as to allow citizens from across the EU to contribute to the discussions. It also agreed on its working methods and advanced preparations for the inaugural event on Europe Day, 9 May.
The citizens' platform will give opportunities to citizens from across Europe to provide their views in their own language on any topic that they consider important for the future of the EU. This will enable citizens – for the first time at EU level – to put forward their ideas, comment on other people's ideas, create and participate in events.
The platform will be the Conference's central hub, a place where all contributions will be brought together and shared, including decentralised events, the European Citizens' Panels and Conference Plenaries.
A specialised feedback mechanism will aggregate and analyse key points raised, so that they can also be taken into account during the European Citizens' panels and Conference Plenaries.
The platform will also provide information on the Conference's structure and work, as well as resources for event organisers including a catalogue of key events through which they will be able to promote their initiatives at local, regional, national, and European levels. Citizens will easily be able to look up events in which they wish to participate thanks to an events map.
The Conference's official hashtag #TheFutureIsYours is an invitation to EU citizens to contribute and define the EU's future: “The future is in your hands”.
We need to make this discussion as lively as possible, and in times of Covid that means to experiment with digital platforms as much as we can, Guy Verhofstadt (RE, BE), co-chair from the EP said after the Executive Board meeting on Wednesday. “With this platform, we offer the tools to give everyone a chance to get actively engaged in this debate, and we will make sure these ideas feed into the analysis and conclusions of the Conference. It's their future, so it's their Conference,” he underscored.
The Portuguese Secretary of State for EU Affairs on behalf of the Presidency of the Council of the EU, Ana Paula Zacarias, commented that the digital platform will bring Europeans into the public space. According to her, it will allow them to express their concerns, share their dreams and expectations and to engage with their representatives.
“The Union needs the power of its citizens behind it to make it stronger. This is a decisive moment, and this will allow us to debate differing views frankly and without taboos,” the Portuguese Secretary of State for European Affairs and Executive Board co-chair also stated.
The launch of the digital platform in ten days' time will provide a unique space for our citizens to engage in conversations and debates right across Europe, stressed EC Vice-President for Democracy and Demography, Dubravka Šuica, who is as well an Executive Board co-chair. “ It will allow people to share their ideas, concerns, hopes and dreams – and in all official EU languages. Momentum is now growing and I look forward to seeing the outcome,” she pointed out.
The Executive Board will meet again in two weeks, in order to finalise their discussion on the rules of procedure, and to address other prerequisites for the organisation of the Conference.