Today, the European Anti Poverty Network (EAPN) releases 10 demands for the next European Parliament. With 79 million people in the EU facing poverty, with growing inequalities within and outside the EU, with a growing sense of precarity and anxiety among large sections of the population, the demands set out an agenda for the EU to seriously commit to the fight against poverty and to the achievement of greater social cohesion.
“The economic and social model pursued by the EU during these past 5 years has too often prioritised ‘market freedoms’ over social rights and environmental concerns” said Ludo Horemans, President of EAPN. “Too often this model has exacerbated the position of ‘the poor’ and undermined social commitments by prioritising “growth and jobs” at any price” he continued.
“The European Elections must offer a real debate about the type of EU we want” insisted Fintan Farrell, Director of EAPN. “The ten demands put forward by EAPN contribute to that debate and seek to ensure that the people who least benefited from the economic boom are not made to pay the price for its excesses” he concluded.
EAPN’s 10 demands are:
- Make Social Cohesion and the fight against poverty and inequality in the EU and the promotion of global equity a named EU priority.
- Set and monitor EU and national level targets for poverty and inequality reduction as part of a highly visible EU strategy against poverty.
- Set benchmarks for active governance in decision-making processes at EU and Member State levels, ensuring the participation of antipoverty NGO’s including people experiencing poverty.
- Make progress on developing an EU framework to defend high level social standards and to guarantee a dignified life for all.
- Ensure access for all to affordable quality services.
- Put the commitment to ‘Decent and Quality Work” back at the centre of the European Employment Strategy.
- Support social economy and inclusive entrepreneurship.
- Strengthen EU anti-discrimination legislation.
- Mainstream the fight against poverty across all policies.
- 2010 has been declared the EU Year against Poverty and Social Exclusion: MEPs can play a positive role as ambassadors for the year.
For further information, please contact Audrey Gueudet (Communication & Press Officer) or Fintan Farrell (Director), tel. +32 2 226 58 50 – fax. +32 2 226 58 69 – E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org – Website: www.eapn.eu