72,660 of 100,000 signatures

We are a welcoming Europe, let us help!

Governments are struggling to handle migration. Most of us want to help people in need because we care. Millions have stood up to help. Now we want to be heard. Let’s reclaim a Welcoming Europe! We call upon the European Commission to act:

  1. Citizens across Europe want to sponsor refugees to offer them a safe home and a new life. We want the Commission to offer direct support to local groups that help refugees who are granted national visas.
  2. No one should be prosecuted or fined for offering humanitarian help or shelter. We want the Commission to stop those governments that are punishing volunteers.
  3. Everyone has the right to justice. We want the Commission to guarantee more effective ways and rules to defend all victims of labour exploitation and crime across Europe and all victims of human rights abuses at our borders.

Why is this important?

Manuel, a firefighter from Spain, will soon be tried for human smuggling with two of his colleagues, Enrique Rodríguez and Julio Latorre. [1] Greece will try him for rescuing people from drowning on 7 May 2018. Every day, brave volunteers across Europe risk the same fate as Manuel. But we have a plan:

We’ve been working with partners on a European Citizens’ Initiative. It requires 1,000,000 EU citizens to sign, and would legally compel the EU to listen to our proposals. It could even lead directly to a change in the relevant EU migration law, which currently criminalises compassion. [2]

The initiative speaks to the root causes of why volunteers need to risk their freedom in the first place! Volunteers feel an urgency to brave EU seas because of the collective failing of our EU governments. People continue to drown. A lack of EU rules disempowers ordinary people who want to help by providing their homes and safe passage.

The European Citizens’ Initiative calls for precisely such rules, so that ordinary people can open their own homes to people. Rescue volunteers like Manuel won’t be able to rest until people fleeing war don’t have to risk their lives just to reach refuge.

We know European Citizens’ Initiatives can work, and that our community can make them work! We led one last year and dealt big blows to Monsanto. [3] This was due to our community, our partners, [4] and 1.3 million EU citizens who signed. Now we can do it all again, this time to ensure our life-saving volunteers are no longer criminalised in Europe.

The WeMove community came together to help such volunteers in the past. With our partners [5], we built a wave of support that brought Manuel all the way to the EU Commission in Brussels in 2016. Although the Commissioner for Migration acknowledged the problem, the EU left him to face prosecution by Greece. We can’t let him stand alone.

People like Manuel have shown us that there is another face to Europe. If we come together again now, we can show our support for Manuel AND tackle the root of the problem by changing EU law. If people fleeing war and persecution have safe ways to reach Europe, volunteers like Manuel will no longer have to risk their freedom to save others.



Image credit: PROEMAID

[1] https://elpais.com/elpais/2016/01/18/inenglish/1453131017_476612.html

[2] European Parliament study: “Fit for Purpose? The Facilitation Directive and the Criminalisation of Humanitarian Assistance to Irregular Migrants”: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/thinktank/en/document.html?reference=IPOL_STU%282016%29536490

Actual text of the EU’s Facilitation directive: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/ALL/?uri=CELEX%3A32002L0090

[3] The European Parliament banned Monsanto lobbyists, and now has a special committee investigating pesticides!

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/sep/28/monsanto-banned-from-european-parliament">https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/sep/28/monsanto-banned-from-european-parliament

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/committees/en/pest/home.html

[4] Campact, CEO, GLOBAL2000, Greenpeace, SumOfUs, Avaaz, Health and Environment Alliance, the Danish Society for Nature Conservation, Pesticide Action Network, Skiftet, and all supporting organisations in the 100-strong ECI coalition

[5] socialplatform and PROEMAID



In partnership with:

Next: add a few more details to validate your signature of the ECI

A European Citizen’s Initiative (ECI) is a legal instrument, which, if successful, obliges the European Commission to hear the demands of citizens in a formal procedure.

For this reason there are also certain rules that must be followed when signing. The information fields required are not set by WeMove.EU, but are determined by which member state you are signing the ECI for. The extra information that is being asked of you is a legal requirement for your signature to be considered valid.

We are a welcoming Europe, let us help!

Governments are struggling to handle migration. Most of us want to help people in need because we care. Millions have stood up to help. Now we want to be heard. Let’s reclaim a Welcoming Europe! We call upon the European Commission to act:

  1. Citizens across Europe want to sponsor refugees to offer them a safe home and a new life. We want the Commission to offer direct support to local groups that help refugees who are granted national visas.
  2. No one should be prosecuted or fined for offering humanitarian help or shelter. We want the Commission to stop those governments that are punishing volunteers.
  3. Everyone has the right to justice. We want the Commission to guarantee more effective ways and rules to defend all victims of labour exploitation and crime across Europe and all victims of human rights abuses at our borders.

Your information is firstly encrypted (so no one can access it) and is stored temporarily on a secure server in Germany. Once enough signatures have been collected in your country, they are then handed over to the officials in your country who will offically verify the signatures.

WeMove is legally not allowed to store or use the extra information you supply for any purpose other than relating to the European Citizen’s Initiative you have supplied it for. Once the ECI has ended, WeMove will destroy all the extra information supplied for the purposes of this ECI. WeMove's ability to perform these tasks securely has been certified according to the requierements of the European Union.

All normal data protection rules and law apply.

A European Citizens' Initiative is a special way that ordinary European citizens like us can demand the European Commission investigates whether there should be a change in the law in Europe. It is different to a regular petition because this tool legally obliges the European Commission to consider and investigae our demands as citizens. So it gives us more bargaining power.

To be considered successful, a European Citizen’s Initiative needs to reach over 1 million valid signatures throughout the European Union. In addition to that, a minimum number of signatures must be reached in at least seven member states.

ECIs can only be on a topic or policy that the European Commission has the power to legislate on.

To support a European Citizens' Initiative, you must be an EU citizen (national of an EU member state) and be old enough to vote in European Parliament elections (18 except Austria where the voting age is 16).

To see more information on exactly who is eligible please visit the website of the ECI from the European Commission.

Manuel, a firefighter from Spain, will soon be tried for human smuggling. [1] Greece will try him for rescuing people from drowning on 7 May 2018. Every day, brave volunteers across Europe risk the same fate as Manuel. But we have a plan:

We’ve been working with partners on a European Citizens’ Initiative. It requires 1,000,000 EU citizens to sign, and would legally compel the EU to listen to our proposals. It could even lead directly to a change in the relevant EU migration law, which currently criminalises compassion. [2]

The initiative speaks to the root causes of why volunteers need to risk their freedom in the first place! Volunteers feel an urgency to brave EU seas because of the collective failing of our EU governments. People continue to drown. A lack of EU rules disempowers ordinary people who want to help by providing their homes and safe passage.

The European Citizens’ Initiative calls for precisely such rules, so that ordinary people can open their own homes to people. Rescue volunteers like Manuel won’t be able to rest until people fleeing war don’t have to risk their lives just to reach refuge.

We know European Citizens’ Initiatives can work, and that our community can make them work! We led one last year and dealt big blows to Monsanto. [3] This was due to our community, our partners, [4] and 1.3 million EU citizens who signed. Now we can do it all again, this time to ensure our life-saving volunteers are no longer criminalised in Europe.

The WeMove community came together to help such volunteers in the past. With our partners [5], we built a wave of support that brought Manuel all the way to the EU Commission in Brussels in 2016. Although the Commissioner for Migration acknowledged the problem, the EU left him to face prosecution by Greece. We can’t let him stand alone.

People like Manuel have shown us that there is another face to Europe. If we come together again now, we can show our support for Manuel AND tackle the root of the problem by changing EU law. If people fleeing war and persecution have safe ways to reach Europe, volunteers like Manuel will no longer have to risk their freedom to save others.

References

[1] https://elpais.com/elpais/2016/01/18/inenglish/1453131017_476612.html

[2] European Parliament study: “Fit for Purpose? The Facilitation Directive and the Criminalisation of Humanitarian Assistance to Irregular Migrants” http://www.europarl.europa.eu/thinktank/en/document.html?reference=IPOL_STU%282016%29536490

Actual text of the EU’s Facilitation directive: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/ALL/?uri=CELEX%3A32002L0090

[3] The European Parliament banned Monsanto lobbyists, and now has a special committee investigating pesticides!

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/sep/28/monsanto-banned-from-european-parliament

http://www.europarl.europa.eu/committees/en/pest/home.html

[4] Campact, CEO, GLOBAL2000, Greenpeace, SumOfUs, Avaaz, Health and Environment Alliance, the Danish Society for Nature Conservation, Pesticide Action Network, Skiftet, and all supporting organisations in the 100-strong ECI coalition

[5] socialplatform and PROEMAID

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Please can you chip in?

Our WeMove community stands side-by-side with life-saving rescue volunteers on the Mediterranean, and citizens who want to contribute to solutions in their own communities. That’s why we’re helping our partners to organise this European Citizens’ Initiative.

But an ECI is a massive undertaking, and effective campaigns need funding. In order to be ready to mobilise and put pressure when and where it’s most needed, we need the stability and flexibility that only be provided by small regular donations from people like you in the WeMove community.

Can you chip in just a few euros each month to help us achieve a welcoming Europe?

Next step - spread the word

Thank you for continuing to stand side-by-side with volunteers at sea and people fleeing for their lives. If we all stand up for a welcoming Europe, we can change EU migration law.

We know European Citizens’ Initiatives can work, and that our community can make them work – we led one last year and dealt big blows to Monsanto! But in order to force the EU to respond, first we need 1,000,000 signatures. Will you help by sharing this action?

If our whole community supports this initiative now, we can make a big splash in the media. This could grab the EU’s attention before we even reach one million signatures! Please share our action:

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