On 9 May, the Renew Europe Group in the European Committee of the Regions (Renew Europe CoR) hosted a special Europe Day Summit that brought together more than 60 mayors and regional leaders. Led by Renew Europe CoR President, Mayor of Saint-Omer and Regional Councillor for the Hauts-de-France region, François Decoster, with a special rendition of Ode to Joy from Bratislava courtesy of its Mayor Matúš Vallo, a declaration entitled ‘For a Sovereign, Decentralised, Federal Europe’ was issued.
In the declaration, mayors and regional leaders call for a sovereign, decentralised and federal Europe, with nine concrete calls, including for example a call for a less fragmented leadership structure and a commitment to smart investments. The signatories invite all Europeans to join them in urging the national and European leaders to build this renewed Union.
Indeed, while this year’s Europe Day marked the 70th Anniversary of the Schuman Declaration, it was a hard day for us all, as Europe and Europeans continue to be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Europe’s citizens have mixed feelings about the handling of the COVID-19 crisis by public authorities, especially the EU institutions, and this unfortunate situation has undermined the trust of citizens in the European Union. COVID-19 has demonstrated that to protect the lives and health of our citizens and to preserve our economy, the EU must take robust actions, proportionate to the dangers threatening us.
Mayors and regional ministers are at the forefront of tackling this crisis, crucially assisting in containing the spread of the virus, in particular by maintaining public order and implementing an array of very practical measures of social distancing, reinforcing local capacities, preparedness and robustness of the health service infrastructure, as well as adopting the first measures aimed at alleviating the impact on the local and regional economy, while also guaranteeing the provision of all indispensable public services.
60+ mayors & regional leaders call for a Sovereign, Decentralised, Federal Europe. Declaration from special #LiberalMayors summit, hosted by President @fdecoster & special rendition of Ode to Joy from Bratislava courtesy of @matusvallo: https://t.co/jYn2l70gaP. #EuropeDay pic.twitter.com/lagaoBqmpy— Renew Europe CoR (@RenewEuropeCoR) May 9, 2020