New Europeans Annual Review


Introduction

This has been a year of growth for New Europeans despite the pandemic, during which we have developed our profile as an influential opinion-former within the European Union as well as a growing presence internationally.

A special mention should be given to the work of Giovanni Brauzzi who has spear-headed the work we have done on the call for a European Health Union.

We would also like to highlight the extraordinary courage and commitment of Olga K. from New Europeans in Belarus and our friends in the Belarus diaspora, joint winners of the New European of the Year Award 2020.

Thirdly, special thanks are due to Maria Laura Franciosi, who helped us complete our move from Rue Washington in Ixelles to our new home at the Brussels Press Club, 95 Rue Froissart, 1000 Brussels.

Fourthly, we were excited to announce the launch of New Europeans North America in September 2020, under the leadership of Agnieszka Weinar, who is based in Ottawa, Canada.

Fifthly, this has been a year of new and growing alliances, as we continue to play our part as a board member of European Civic Forum and founding member of Europe Future Fringe and Citizens Take Over Europe.

I am grateful to the superb team of activists who supported our work in 2020, developing our online presence and programming as well as our campaigns and alliances as well as to all the members of our board.

We have shown that while there is little that one person alone can do by themselves, a group of committed individuals can make a difference and shape the future of Europe.

This is our time as citizens and we are making the most of that opportunity.

Roger Casale

Secretary General

The New Europeans Aisbl

Activity and impact report

New Europeans International campaigns for a Europe of the citizens, a democratic Europe of social justice and equality anchored in human rights.

To achieve these objectives, we campaign across Europe (not just in the EU) for democracy, human rights and the rule of law.

All our campaigns and activities are borne from the everyday experience of citizens who want to make their contribution to a better future for all who live and work in Europe.

Campaigns

Europe Future Fringe

Throughout 2020, New Europeans met regularly with our partner organisations Europe Future Forum and Volonteurope and worked to expand the range or events and activities linked to Europe Future Fringe in anticipation of the start of the Conference on the Future of Europe. The online digital platform of the official conference has drawn on the ideas behind our European Future Fringe App which is still in development. More details on our dedicated website set at ww.europefuturefringe.com.

European Green Card

The idea of a Green Card to guarantee free movement rights has received a boost from the European Commission’s adoption of a digital green certificate in the context of the pandemic. Throughout 2020 we continued to make the case for a Green Card to ring-fence the rights of “the 5 million” (EU citizens in the UK and Britons in Europe directly affected by Brexit) – we are also working on the idea of a Green Card for all third country nationals in the EU.

European Health Union

The pandemic has focussed minds on the need for a healthcare system in Europe that works across borders. Since our call for a European Health Union on 9 May 2020 the European Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides has announced that plans are in place to make this a reality.

We were also delighted that the Italian G20 held a Global Health Summit on lessons learned from the pandemic as we had also called for on 9 May.

Projects

Friday Casebook

Friday Casebook is a weekly show on the New Europeans TV Youtube channel - project conception by Lena Kronenbürger and Roger Casale. The ten minute programme highlights events in Europe and the world and looks ahead at what’s coming up on the New Europeans agenda.  We aim to include interviews with well-known public figures as part of the show going forward.

Quo Vadis

Quo vadis is a series of monthly Facebook live events which bring campaigners, politicians, journalists, academics and other opinion formers together to analyse key events in Europe’s neighbourhood for the perspective of citizens, such as human rights abuses in Poland, democratic back-sliding in Hungary, threats to freedom of the press in Ukraine and rule of law breaches in Poland.

Tuesday Conversation

Tuesday Conversation has been an experiment which aims to get Europeans to talk to each other and to showcase the experience. The project was thought up by Povl Henningsen and Roger Casale and has brought together dozens of Europeans from different parts of the world (not just in Europe) to discuss everyday issues such as life under the pandemic.

Research

Reflections on the Future of Europe

Reflections on the Future of Europe is designed to give leading international experts in the fields of European democracy, citizenship and identity the opportunity to come together and discuss new work in these areas which touches on the future of Europe debate and the well-being of citizens.

A key component of the series will be the interaction with the public through social media immediately after each discussion and between the events.

Governance and membership

New Europeans International (New Europeans Aisbl) is a membership organisation, open to individual member and to associations including chapters of New Europeans organised on a city, regional or transnational basis.

Directors of New Europeans International are elected on a three year mandate. The Secretary General of New Europeans International is Roger Casale, the founder of New Europeans.

Board Meetings

The board of New Europeans International (The New Europeans Aisbl) met regularly throughout 2020 and we thank Povl Henningsen (Chair), Maria Laura Franciosi, Olivier Védrine (Treasurer), Alan Hick, Suzana Carp and Katharina Lawall for their contributions to this work.

Katharina Lawall stepped down from the board as a requirement of a research grant obtained from the government of North Rhine Westphalia which precluded her continued membership of New Europeans to avoid a possible conflict of interest. The mandate of Suzana Carp expired in 2020. We thank both for their contributions to New Europeans.

Co-operation Agreement with New Europeans UK

During 2020, the board of New Europeans International (New Europeans Aisbl) concluded a co-operation agreement with New Europeans UK (New Europeans Association Ltd) to allow New Europeans campaign work to be led from New Europeans International in future, pending the outcome of New Europeans UK application for charitable status.

As a result of the Co-operation Agreement, membership income accrues to New Europeans International against a small service fee of 1.5%. An advance on the membership income due for 2021 was transferred to New Europeans International at the end of 2020.

Membership

Membership of New Europeans continues to grow and now stands at over 1,500. Voting members – those members who are both paying an annual direct debit and have registered to attend the AGM of New Europeans International currently stands at 75 including heads of chapters.

 

Stakeholders and external relations

New Europeans cannot achieve our goal of a Europe of the citizens alone.

For this reason, we work closely in partnership with other stakeholders, including campaign alliances, civil society partnerships, journalists, academics and media outlets to achieve our aims.

In 2020, we have forged new partnerships, and taken on a variety of new roles as European civil society has shown the contribution we make to the resilience of the European model in the eye of the pandemic and the central importance of citizens’ voices to the future transformation of Europe states and societies

Memberships

Citizens Take Over Europe

We are founder members of Citizens Take Over Europe,  a group of civil society organisations that emerged in the spring 2020 amidst the recent Covid-19 pandemic, in which we recognized how much the lack of European democracy is deeply affecting our lives. We joined together in a common effort to promote a forward-looking, citizens-centred European democracy.

European Civic Forum

We take an active role as board members of European Civic Forum, a network of over 100 civil society organisations building an active, inclusive dialogue between civil society and the European institutions.

We campaigned successfully in 2020 to protect the rights and values programme of the European commission which funds the work of civil society organisations across Europe working to defend human rights, democracy and the rule of law (civic space).

Europe’s People’s Forum

Europe’s People’s Forum comprises over 50 organisations from 27 member states. The aim of the Forum is to strengthen European democracy by engaging in a debate about the future EU together with other national European initiatives. This debate seeks to impact on the course of the EU and to better align future EU political strategies with the populations’ priorities.

Volonteurope

Working with EU institutions, the Council of Europe, other international and national institutions, Volonteurope promote policies which support, recognise and reward active citizenship and volunteering. We are delighted to support the work of Volonteurope, an organisation that actively encourages political decision-makers to protect and improve the interests of citizens and volunteers, thus creating better social justice.

Partnerships

Eumans – is an Italian-based, pan-European association campaigning for, inter alia, a carbon tax to prevent climate chage. New Europeans’ member Virginia Fiume is the coordinator of Eumans. We work together to promote their Stop Global Warming ECI and on joint projects  such as the European Health Union. We are co-initiators with Eumans of Citizens Take Over Europe.

MEDEL Europe is an association of over 18,000 judges and magistrates in Europe working to protect democracy, human rights and the rule of law in Europe and led by New Europeans’ member Judge Filipe Marques. We support and promote each other’s campaigns and initiatives and attend each other’s events wherever possible.

Media Dialogue is a project financed by the German Foreign Office and led by New Europeans’ member Wolfgang Resmann, which works with journalists and initiatives in the European neighbourhood including in Belarus and Ukraine. We take part in and help promote each other’s events and networks.

Voxeurop is an exciting media project involving a co-operative of journalists and translators promoting the voice of European civil society and rights activists – we are delighted to partner with Voxeurop and are working closely with Paul Salvanès, who is also a member of New Europeans, and the Voxeurop team, to produce high quality content also linked to our projects and events.

Financial report

 

Annex 1

Event highlights

Jan.- Mar. 2020

11 Jan.         Demonstration in defence of the rule of law in Poland, Warsaw

13 Jan.         Launch of European Hub for Civic Engagement, Berlin

31 Jan.         Don’t Make Citizens Pay the Price of Brexit

15 Feb.        Launch of petition to create a European Republic

19 Mar.       First online meeting of Council on Participatory Democracy

Apr.- Jun. 2020

9 May          Launch of Appeal for a European Health Union

21 May        Launch of Call to Europe

22 May        English Language Première, The Words of Ventotene

14 June        Schengen at 35

16 June        Tribute to Jo Cox

18 June        New Europeans anniversary

Jul. – Sep. 2020

17 Jul.         L’avenir d’Europe a besoin de nouvelles voix

27 Aug.       New Europeans International AGM

7 Sep.          Launch of New Europeans North America

10 Sep.        Caravan of Unity

Oct. – Dec. 2020

8 Oct.         European Civic Forum, Annual Conference

18 Nov.       Launch of Reflections on the Future of Europe series

31 Dec.       Connection Lost

 

Annex 2

Media

6 Jan           Finland, Austria and Sweden celebrate 25 years in EU

                    The Parliament Magazine

 

23 Jan          Future of Europe: How to involve citizens in the debate

                  Brussels Times

 

24 Jan          UK government under pressure to provide EU Green Card

                  EU bulletin

 

28 Jan          Candlelit vigil for citizens’ rights outside European Parliament

                  The Parliament Magazine

 

20 Feb         London is Open: Sadiq Khan in Brussels

                  Brussels Times

 

24 Feb         A European Green Card for #the5million?

                  Political Europe

 

14 Mar        Brits in EU are disenfranchised

                  Euractiv

 

17 Mar        EU vaccine developers overlooked

                  The Parliament Magazine

 

26 Mar        Can Europe become stronger after the Coronavirus pandemic?

                  Carnegie Europe

 

8 Apr          Merkel urged to put European solidarity over German interests

                  Open Democracy

 

8 May          Future of Europe Conference in limbo

                  The Parliament Magazine

 

15 May        UK fails to comply with rules on free movement

                  Brussels Times

 

22 May        Ventotene Manifesto: A vision of Europe without borders

                  Brussels Times

 

23 May        Ernesto Rossi and the Call to Europe

                  Euractiv

 

2 Jun           We Demand Justice for George Floyd

                  OneYoungVoice

 

8 Jun           Why do we commemorate the Rosselli brothers?
                  Euractiv Italia

 

16 Jun         As EU re-opens borders, are politicians ready to open minds?

                  The New European

 

25 Jun         CoFoE a chance to achieve more democratic union

                  The Parliament Magazine

 

8 Jul            L’avenir d’Europe a besoin de nouvelles voix

                  EU talk

 

16 Jul          Europe’s vital history lesson after anniversary of massacre

                  The New European

 

22 Jul          Consolidating rights and values should be at heart of recovery

                  Brussels Times

 

10 Aug        Can Johnson avoid a no deal Brexit?

                  The Parliament Magazine

 

14 Aug        EU and UK could still agree an extension

                  The New European

 

19 Aug        Has Europe turned its back on the duty to care?

                  Voxeurop

 

21 Aug        Poland’s rule of law breaches putting EU’s future at stake

                  The Parliament Magazine

 

1 Sep          17 million mobile EU citizens need a voice in the EU

                  Brussels Times

 

14 Sep         The recipe for a successful conversation about future of Europe

                  Voxeurop

 

17 Sep         Stand with Belarus – it’s a matter of principle

                  EU Political report

 

12 Oct        We need to talk about the future of Europe

                  Euractiv

 

19 Oct        Time to get serious about the Future of Europe Conference

Parliament Magazine

 

23 Oct        For a European Health Union

                  ISPI

 

26 Oct        EU investigating abuse of aid by Hungary to undermine media

                  The Parliament Magazine

 

1 Nov         It’s not a sin to talk about migration

                  Voxeurop

 

12 Nov       European health union: first steps towards better coordination

                  Brussels Times

 

27 Nov       Boosting the EU’s democratic legitimacy

                  Euractiv

 

16 Dec        European Parliament hands Sakharov prize to Belarus

                  Brussels Times

 

25 Dec        Brexit deal: the day after

                  Brussels Times

 

31 Dec        Farewell to Freedom of Movement

                  The New European

 

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