92,397 of 125,000 signatures

European Commission, EU Governments and EU Parliament and Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission

Petition

We call on the European Union to make the COVID-19 vaccines and treatments accessible to everyone, everywhere. The EU should:

  • Release all patents and licences of the anti-pandemic vaccines and treatments;
  • Make public all contracts between public EU authorities and pharmaceutical companies;
  • Ensure that vaccines and treatments are affordable and accessible for all.

Why is this important?

Adriano Trevisan was 77 years old and had a gentle smile. He loved to play cards with the locals of his small Italian hometown of Vo’. He was the first person to die of Covid-19 in Italy. [1]

Since then it’s been hard to learn the names, faces and stories of those we have lost. Instead we are presented with numbers. 88,845 deaths in Italy. Over 100,000 in the UK. [2]

So as the vaccines fight continues, we watch companies like AstraZeneca hold way too much power on who gets them. It’s easy to forget what is at stake. A sister. A friend. A grandfather.

Vaccines are the single best chance of survival for millions. We need to be able to produce them more widely and we need them to be affordable to get out of this pandemic. The first step is to make the rights to produce the vaccines, the patents, public.

It’s possible to do, but standing up to big pharma and their profits is not easy. Charles Michel, President of the EU Council, has just joined the call of some MEPs for AstraZeneca’s patent to be made public. [3] Let’s make sure he puts his words into action.


References:

  1. https://www.repubblica.it/cronaca/2020/02/22/news/adriano_trevisan_la_prima_vittima_di_coronavirus_in_italia-249260446/ (Article in Italian)
  2. https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/cases-2019-ncov-eueea https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-52676411
  3. https://www.politico.eu/article/charles-michel-says-eu-could-invoke-urgent-measures-response-coronavirus-vaccine-shortfall/

Image source; Tim Reckmann, Flickr, here.


Tweet to Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission

Next week, EU leaders will decide whether to back a groundbreaking plan to unlock COVID-19 patents to boost global vaccine production and ensure all countries in Europe and beyond get fair access.

At present it’s finely balanced, and public pressure could tip their decision the right way. You’ve already signed the petition, but now, it’s time to set twitter on fire.

Ask Ursula von der Leyen to support this plan now!

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