- About Us
- Our Work
BREXIT: Finally a chance for sustainable prosperity?
Today the European Parliament debated the consequences of BREXIT and the further process of negotiating the future relationship between the EU and the UK. Commission President Juncker outlined that “the EU has to respect the will of UK citizens” and continued saying “that we cannot be embroiled in lasting uncertainty […] the UK Government has to provide clarity on what it wants and what it needs […] one element has to be clear however: no secret negotiations”.
UK referendum: bonjour tristesse!
The result is known now. Today may be a sad day for Europe, for the United Kingdom, but the result is on the table and needs to be respected with all its consequences. It needs European leadership and progressives have to consider how to stand stronger against the populist wave. The result aside, the referendum raises a broader question about referenda as a tool of democracy: within civil society the call for more participatory democracy has always been widely echoed. The European Citizens Initiative (ECI) was conceived as a response to citizens’ concern for having political decisions made with their direct participation through referenda. The ECI has not yet become the tool it was initially designed to be and the European Commission can still decide whether a legal initiative is taken or not. Many formal and bureaucratic burdens obstruct the path of initiators and in the end it continues to be a matter of political will (see ECI on water and sanitation are a human right).
A new skills agenda for Europe
On 20 June the European Commission hosted the launch of the New Skills Agenda for Europe that aims to support the development of citizens’ skills to prepare them for the changing world of work and our society. According to the latest PIAAC (OECD Survey of Adult Skills) study, about 70 million Europeans lack a sufficient level of basic skills such as reading, writing and numeracy; this puts their employment and social inclusion in jeopardy. Moreover there is a great need to invest in skills development, and to recognise skills. The SOLIDAR Foundation attended the meeting with great interest, especially since an initiative in the field of education and employment, focusing on the development of skills and competences, was long awaited, and needed to support investment in lifelong learning. However the success of this proposal is in the hands of the Member States.
Reinforcing Trade Unions’ rights in Algeria and Egypt as part of the EU Partnership Priorities
Last week, SOLIDAR together with the Arab Trade Union Confederation and EuroMed Rights, addressed a joint letter to VP/HR Mogherini and Commissioner Hahn calling to reinforce trade unions’ rights in Algeria and Egypt as part of the EU Partnership Priorities.