Strasbourg: second Conference Plenary meeting to discuss citizens’ contributions
On Saturday 23 October, the second Conference Plenary meeting took place in the European Parliament in Strasbourg to discuss citizens’ contributions.
The 80 representatives of the European Citizens’ Panels took their seats as Members of the Plenary and discussions focused on citizens’ contributions from:
- the European Citizens’ Panels (initial impressions, work streams and subtopics);
- national panels and events (report presented by national panel representatives);
- the European Youth Event (the 20 most popular ideas were presented by EYE2021 representatives);
- and the second interim report from the Multilingual Digital Platform.
The Conference on the Future of Europe is an unprecedented, open and inclusive democratic exercise, with a Multilingual Digital Platform, where all Europeans are invited to have their say on how to shape our shared future on various issues.
The Co-Chairs of the Conference made the following statements from Strasbourg:
Guy Verhofstadt (European Parliament), said: “The enthusiasm in the Citizens’ Panels is great, expectations are high, the formula is working. Now the Plenary has to find answers to the issues raised, in the form of a shared vision of Europe’s future and concrete deliverables on how we reform the European Union. EU politics have to rise to the occasion.”
Gašper Dovžan (Presidency of the Council) commented that: “Tens of thousands of citizens continue to discuss the future of Europe in the European and national panels and events, as well as on the Platform. The Plenary will debate and bring forward their recommendations in the areas that matter most to them, without a predetermined outcome. This is the first Plenary under the Slovenian Presidency of the Council and we were very pleased to welcome representatives from our Western Balkans partners as key stakeholders with whom we share responsibility for the future of the EU.”
Dubravka Šuica (Vice-President of the European Commission) stated: “This is a historic moment where, for the first time, citizens deliberate on a par with their elected representatives at all levels. Bringing citizens to the core of European policymaking will reinforce our representative democracies, as we set sail towards our common future.”
Extracts are available on EbS, and all video, audio and photo coverage (including an edited video) can be downloaded from Parliament’s Multimedia Centre. A recorded press point with the three Co-Chairs is also available.
The next Conference Plenary will take place on 17-18 December. In the meantime, citizens’ contributions to the Conference will continue to flow in:
- the European Citizens’ Panels will meet online in November, and the first two will finalise their recommendations and present them in Plenary in December;
- the Multilingual Digital Platform remains available for citizens’ ideas and events, which will become part of the third report due for December, and which will feed into the last sessions of European Citizens’ Panels and the upcoming meetings of the Conference Plenary; and
- national panels and events are still being organised in the member states.
Press, ec.europa.eu. Photo credit: Vincent Nicolas/Unsplash