03 Apr, 2020

Europe’s Liberals are on guard to protect core values

Drastic times call for drastic measures, and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is no exception. From country to country, from government to government, unprecedented measures have been put in place to ensure the health and safety of citizens and the stability of economies.

But while global health crises have brought world leaders together to fight the common enemy and express solidarity in the past, this current crisis we are living in is turning out to be quite something else. Around the world, leaders and governments are taking advantage of the situation to limit the freedoms of citizens and societies, to harden authoritarian systems and to erode liberal democracies. And while drastic measures to contain the COVID-19 outbreak can be justified, they must always be temporary and subjected to parliamentary control.

For this reason, Europe’s Liberals are on guard. We will continue to defend and protect our core values of freedom and democracy and will call out measures and leaders that are using this situation to establish or consolidate their authoritarian powers, undermine liberal democracy and abolish the division of powers and the rule of law.

To illustrate the situation better, the ALDE Party has put together an interactive map, Corona Dictatorship Watchdog, that presents an overview of the situation. The map – updated regularly as more information becomes available – also features countries that have taken questionable action from a liberal point of view but that could still be justified as short-term measures. In recording the data, we have considered the following aspects of the different measures introduced by leaders and governments to determine whether they deliver what they have been set out to do:

How does the abolishment of parliamentary control and suppression of freedom of speech help to procure necessary medical equipment, limit the infection rate and help support families and businesses in need?

We are also happy to hear from you – let us know of the measures that are taking place in your country by contacting us at [email protected]

You can access our interactive map here.

We have also put together a special COVID-19 website section that features relevant articles, resources and campaigns related to the ongoing pandemic.

Don’t forget to subscribe to our ACT! Campaigns to receive our latest action on COVID-19 and make sure you follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for daily updates.

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