PES, Trade Unions and NGOs consult and coordinate strategy for EU Recovery Plan

29/05/2020

NGO consultation videoconference

NGO consultation videoconference

Organisations representing the people most affected by this crisis must play a central role in shaping the recovery, the PES stated today as it held a consultation with NGOs and trade unions.

The chairs of three PES networks today convened with representatives from several organisations to hear comments and suggestions on a draft PES document The PES Plan to contain the Covid-19 shock and recover! 

Maria João Rodrigues, Chair of the PES Financial and Economic Network and FEPS President, who led the consultation meeting said:

“It is important that we leave no one behind as we recover from this crisis. That is why we held a consultation with NGOs and trade unions today. This recovery will only be successful if their voices are listened to and their concerns and priorities are put at the centre of our efforts.

“The message from our NGO and trade union colleagues has been heard loud and clear. The progressive political family is determined to prevent what happened in the last crisis. We say no to austerity, which only leads to cuts to wages, social protection and public services. And yes to a recovery based on a fair balance between people, planet and the economy.

“Progressives are fighting for a recovery which moves us closer to an economy based on sustainability and fairness, with good jobs and solid social protections. A recovery which leads to a stronger health sector and healthy democracies across the EU.”

Javi Lopez, Chair of the PES Environment, Climate Change & Energy Network added:

“Some voices have been quick in demanding a moratorium on the ecological transition. This is the wrong perspective on fighting the COVID-19 impact. Instead, the European Green Deal provides us with direct opportunities for this recovery. We have long fought for this paradigm shift in EU policy, away from the short-term mentality towards an economy based on sustainability and fairness.

“It is crucial that we continue the pathway outlined in the European Green Deal. These policies are now more needed than ever and must play a central role in re-building our economy in response to Covid-19.”

Agnes Jongerius, Chair of the PES Social Europe Network, said:

“Millions of businesses had to close temporarily and thousands of workers were forced into temporary unemployment because of Covid. We need to meet the challenges ahead, to contain the socio-economic consequences, initiate a fair recovery, and pave the way for fairer societies. The main focus must be to keep workers in employment, ensuring proper and safe working conditions and the respect of workers’ rights. We need to roll out a full Social Action Plan, European minimum income schemes and more support for young people, with the full involvement of social partners. That is how we start to deliver a recovery that leaves no one behind.”

The NGO consultation follows on from work by a host of PES thematic networks, which are currently examining specific aspects of the recovery. The PES’s Financial and Economic Network, Social Europe Network, and Environment, Climate Change and Energy Network have all met to discuss and debate the progressive response to the crisis. This comes on top of PES Leaders and ministerial meetings focused on the recovery. 

Earlier this week the PES welcomed the Commission’s recovery plan – which contains many progressive priorities – as a historic opportunity to kickstart the reconstruction of the Union and move towards a more progressive and people-oriented Europe.