Tue. Sep 21st, 2021

The Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament want to influence the political agenda of the European Union to bring new impetus to crucial policies that can no longer wait.

A few days ahead of the State of the Union debate, the president of the S&D Group, Iratxe García Pérez, handed a letter to the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, outlining the demands of the Socialists and Democrats for the 2022 Working Programme and for the following years until the end of this legislative cycle.

Iratxe García said:

“Overall we have good co-operation with the Commission, but the support of my Group is not a blank cheque and we need to see more ambition. We all understand that Covid made things very difficult over the last two years, but it also showed how urgent some of the reforms are.

“The events in Afghanistan remind us that we need to put in place a coherent and credible framework for legal migration and asylum seekers. It is time to show the political will to face this very complex challenge. If we want to live up to our values, we must urgently establish humanitarian corridors, but also a permanent system, including predictable relocation systems, needs to be established.

“The devastating floods this summer are just one more consequence of the climate emergency. It is time to act with determination. We want to see a Biodiversity Law to ensure that declining ecosystems are restored and adequately protected for the long term.

“Gender-based violence also demands a blunt response, a clear legal basis in the form of a European directive.

“We have shyly laid the first building blocks for some important policies, such as the protection of the rule of law, or common investments in our future, but these fledging policies need a more robust structure and long-term permanence.”

Read the full letter to Ursula von der Leyen on the S&Ds’ 10 key priorities