COVID-19: Time to show citizens that they can count on Europe

DISCLAIMER: All opinions in this column reflect the views of the author(s), not of EURACTIV Media network.

shutterstock_1281497575 (1) [Shutterstock/GagoDesign]

European citizens have been exemplary in their fight against COVID 19. They have bravely overcome an acute sanitary threat and paid the high economic, social and psychological price of the lockdown, write a group of European lawmakers.

This op-ed is co-signed by 71 MEPs from the major political groups in the European Parliament. Each member state is represented by one or several MEPs.

After these stressful months, they were looking forward to pleasant holidays in neighbouring countries. Unfortunately, the lack of coordination between member states completely disrupted the restful days of our citizens.

The European Parliament and the Commission pointed at potential problems already months before but the member states failed to act appropriately.

This summer, we have witnessed, powerless, the chaos at the internal borders of the European Union: unilateral decisions to control or restrict borders, based on disparate maps and contested test results from one country to another.

Yesterday tourists, tomorrow workers (cross-border and seasonal workers), students, artists… This disorganisation will not only have health repercussions but also consequences on economic, scientific and cultural life in Europe.

The freedom of movement within Schengen, to which we are deeply attached, should not be threatened every month, every week, every day, without any coordination and, above of all, without any proper justification. The Covid-19 crisis should not become an excuse for any kind of national egoism.

We are stronger together, let’s not forget it. Let’s prove it!

We are sending this call for action to the Commission and the Member States.

From our point of view, the EU should rapidly adopt a common methodology for health data collection and the qualification of risk mapping with common colour codes.

The EU has to converge on common screening strategies and harmonize the epidemiological monitoring.

The EU needs to establish common benchmarks for public health decision making in order to facilitate coordinated decisions on border controls and, if necessary, on restrictions of movements between certain European regions.

Any decision should rely on the opinion of a European Scientific Advisory Board.

The European Parliament will not only draw lessons learned from the disparities in the management of this acute health crisis but will also identify measures and actions to promote and implement in all member states.

Time has come for the Commission, the member states and the Parliament to deliver concrete solutions and react in a united way!

 

*** Signatories

Véronique Trillet-Lenoir, French MEP, Renew Europe Deputy Coordinator in the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety

Peter Liese, German MEP, EPP Coordinator in the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety

Sara Cerdas, Portuguese MEP (S&D), Co-Chair of the Health Working Group

Petra de Sutter, Belgian MEP (Greens/EFA), Chair of the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection, Head of Delegation

Andris Ameriks, Latvian MEP (S&D)

Bartosz Arkulowicz, Polish MEP (EPP)

Margrete Auken, Danish MEP, Greens/EFA Coordinator in the Committee on Petitions, Head of Delegation

Monika Benova, Slovak MEP, Quaestor of the European Parliament (S&D), Head of Delegation

Stéphane Bijoux, French MEP (Renew Europe)

Biljana Borzan, Croatian MEP, Vice-President of the S&D Group, Head of Delegation

Gilles Boyer, French MEP, Quaestor of the European Parliament (Renew Europe)

Sylvie Brunet, French MEP, Renew Europe Deputy-Coordinator in the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs, Vice-President of the Renew Europe Group

Cristian-Silviu Busoi, Romanian MEP (EPP), Chair of the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy

Pascal Canfin, French MEP, Chair of the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (Renew Europe)

Catherine Chabaud, French MEP (Renew Europe)

Olivier Chastel, Belgian MEP, Vice-Chair and Renew Europe Coordinator in the Committee on Budgets, Head of Delegation

Ilana Cicurel, French MEP (Renew Europe)

Tudor Ciuhodaru, Romanian MEP (S&D)

Nathalie Colin-Oesterlé, French MEP, EPP Deputy Coordinator in the Special Committee on Cancer

Katalin Cseh, Hungarian MEP, Vice-President of the Renew Europe Group and Coordinator for Urgency Resolutions, Head of Delegation

Miriam Dalli, Maltese MEP, Vice-President of the S&D Group, Head of Delegation  

Jérémy Decerle, French MEP (Renew Europe)

Pascal Durand, French MEP, Renew Europe Coordinator in the Committee on Constitutional Affairs

Bas Eickhout, Dutch MEP, Greens/EFA Coordinator in the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, Greens/ EFA Vice-President, Head of Delegation

Laurence Farreng, French MEP, Renew Europe Coordinator in the Committee on Culture and Education

Loucas Fourlas, Cypriot MEP (EPP)

Cindy Franssen, Belgian MEP, EPP Coordinator in the Special Committee on Cancer

Claudia Gamon, Austrian MEP (Renew Europe), Head of Delegation

Andreas Gluck, German MEP (Renew Europe)

Sandro Gozi, Italian MEP elected in France (Renew Europe)

Christophe Grudler, French MEP, Renew Europe Deputy-Coordinator in the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy

Bernard Guetta, French MEP (Renew Europe)

Christophe Hansen, Luxembourgish MEP (EPP), Head of Delegation

Valérie Hayer, French MEP, Renew Europe Coordinator in the Committee on Budgets

Martin Hojsik, Slovak MEP (Renew Europe)

Irena Joveva, Slovenian MEP (Renew Europe), Head of Delegation

Rasa Jukneviciene, Lithuanian MEP (EPP)

Marina Kaljurand, Estonian MEP (S&D), Head of Delegation

Pierre Karleskind, French MEP, Chair of the Committee on Fisheries (Renew Europe)

Fabienne Keller, French MEP (Renew Europe)

Arba Kokalari, Swedish MEP (EPP)

Marcel Kolaja, Czech MEP (Greens/EFA), Vice-President of the European Parliament, Green/ EFA Coordinator in the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection, Head of Delegation

Stelios Kympouropoulos, Greek MEP (EPP)

Nathalie Loiseau, French MEP, Chair of the Subcommittee on Security and Defence (Renew Europe)

Cesar Luena, Spanish MEP (S&D), Vice-Chair of the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety

Karen Melchior, Danish MEP, Renew Europe Coordinator in the Committee on Legal Affairs

Tilly Metz, Luxembourgish MEP (Greens/EFA), Head of Delegation,

Iskra Mihaylova, Bulgarian MEP, Vice-President of the Renew Europe Group

Dolors Montserrat, Spanish MEP (EPP), President of the Committee on Petitions, Co-Chair of the Health Working Group, Head of Delegation

Alessandra Moretti, Italian MEP, S&D Coordinator in the Special Committee on Cancer

Aldo Patriciello, Italian MEP (EPP)

Jutta Paulus, German MEP (Greens/EFA)

Dragos Pislaru, Romanian MEP, Renew Europe Coordinator in the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs

Manuel Pizarro, Portuguese MEP (S&D)

Frédérique Ries, Belgian MEP, Vice-President of the Renew Europe Group

Michèle Rivasi, French MEP, Greens/ EFA coordinator in the Committee on Development, Head of Delegation

Dominique Riquet, French MEP, Vice-President of the Renew Europe Group

Soraya Rodriguez, Spanish MEP, Renew Europe Coordinator in the Subcommittee on Human Rights

Petri Sarvamaa, Finnish MEP (EPP)

Stéphane Séjourné, French MEP (Renew Europe), Head of Renaissance Delegation

Susana Solis Perez, Spanish MEP (Renew Europe)

Maria Spyraki, Greek MEP (EPP)

Nicu Stefanuta, Romanian MEP (Renew Europe)

Irène Tolleret, French MEP (Renew Europe)

Nils Torvalds, Finish MEP, Renew Europe Coordinator in the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, Head of Delegation

Marie-Pierre Vedrenne, French MEP (Renew Europe), Vice-Chair of the Committee on International Trade

Sophie In’t Veld, Dutch MEP, Renew Europe Coordinator in the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, Head of Delegation

Maria Walsh, Irish MEP (EPP)

Tiemo Wolken, German MEP, S&D Coordinator in the Committee on Legal Affairs

Stéphanie Yon-Courtin, French MEP, Vice-Chair and Renew Europe Deputy Coordinator in the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs

Chrysoula Zacharopoulou, Franco-Greek MEP elected in France, Vice-Chair of the Committee on Development (Renew Europe) 

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