JRS Europe launched “Dear European Parliament” a campaign to vote for a welcoming Europe

03 June 2024

Related: Advocacy, JRS Europe
JRS Europe launched the campaign
"Dear European Parliament" is the campaign launched by JRS Europe for the European Parliament elections

The upcoming European Parliament elections, held between 6 and 9 of June, represent an opportunity for all citizens to use their vote to help co-create the Europe they envision.

In this context, JRS Europe has launched “Dear European Parliament”, a campaign calling on all citizens of the European Union (EU) to vote by highlighting how the EU parliament decisions can foster solidarity and hospitality, end migration detention, stop policies outsourcing the responsibility to protect those in need and expand safe and legal ways of reaching Europe.

In terms of solidarity and hospitality, the campaign highlights that the current reception system is failing both asylum seekers (by imposing inhumane reception conditions) and Members states (by placing disproportionate amount of responsibility on the countries at the borders of the EU). In contrast, it calls on the European Parliament to question the status quo and create a common hospitality-driven system based on EU values.

With regards to migration detention, the message is clear: detaining thousands of people, including children, for their immigration status is harmful and ineffective. The next European Parliament should strongly question the use of such an extreme measure and ask for the implementation of alternatives to detention.

The EU and its Member States are increasingly trying to outsource their responsibilities to protect refugees by signing agreements with countries outside the EU who agree to readmit asylum seekers. Many of these countries violate human rights and represent a risk for the people who are sent back. In the face of this worrying trend, the campaign calls on the EU to act as watchdog and look critically into this kind of agreements.

Finally, the campaign underlines the lack of legal and safe ways to reach protection in Europe. The procedures and criteria to obtain existing visas do not adapt to the situation of people fleeing conflict or persecution. JRS Europe calls on the next European Parliament to be vocal on the need to expand safe and legal access to protection and to invest in robust reception systems.

The campaign hopes to particularly mobilise young voters by not only raising awareness on these four issues in an engaging and easy to understand manner, but also highlight that there are alternatives and solutions.

Through four short fast-paced videos exploring one topic each, the campaign makes the case for understanding these topics from a human perspective and understand how the European Parliament decisions can spark change around the continent.

Videos are available in English, Flemish, French, Polish, Romanian and Spanish and you can access them here: https://jrseurope.org/en/project/deareuropeanparliament/

If you want to learn more about the European elections and how to use your vote, visit: https://together.europarl.europa.eu/