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The first Youth Citizen Convention : The core of the relaunch of Europe
The best stories always start with “Once upon a time” …
President Forsythe often likes to recall the organization of the first Youth Citizen Convention by the “Rencontres européennes de la jeunesse” (European Youth Meetings) modelled on the WYD (World Youth Days).
The emergence of European conventions and fora, open and participatory spaces for debate
This initiative was the culmination of the many democratic conventions that had taken place all across the European Federation to stimulate debate and revive the desire of Europe among citizens.
The big hopes resulting from the initiatives spearheaded by the European youth in 2018 have allowed the new European Treaty to keep on carrying the same strength based on popular consensus up to this year, 2030.
A new European treaty has become possible
Drawing from the debates held within the European civil societies, the Member States have agreed on a new treaty covering the themes and priorities that can put the European citizens in direct contact with the issues that the Union faces.
These new guidelines explicitly refer to:
- Social aspects
- Security and defense
- European identity and institutional mechanisms
- Asylum and immigration policies
- Sustainable development
- The digital sector
When the youth fights for innovative ideas
The first European Youth Convention laid the groundwork for the refoundation of the Union, by contributing to the achievement of major progresses on certain topics and to the creation an unprecedented consensual dynamic.
Unbelievably, the youth dared to draft a European constitution, based on simple and concrete solutions in the following fields:
> The relaunch of a social Europe and the rejection of views of Europe based only on the market or the currency
> Mobility for all before 25 (enlarged Erasmus, internships, apprenticeships, European voluntary service, …)
> Europeanization of debates for the creation of transnational lists
> An institutional architecture understandable by the citizens (reduction of the number of Commissioners, suppression of the European Council, a president elected by universal suffrage, …)
> Common security and defense (creation of a European Prosecutor’s Office on terrorism, creation of a European military intervention force, establishment of a single representation at the United Nations, creation of a European civil protection force, integration of all intelligence forces, the interoperability of military equipment, …)
> European Asylum and immigration policy based on common strong and solidary measures.
A common desire to shape the future of Europe: the new leitmotif
Within the arsenal of provisions included in the new European Treaty, President Forsythe particularly appreciated two flagship measures spearheaded by the young people, which were at the heart of European renaissance:
> The development of a long-term European approach to migration which is:
. Based on a new model of development cooperation centered on the transfer of technologies, knowledge and skills;
. Subject to environmental imperatives;
. Combined with a fair European trade policy that respects local agricultural interests;
. Anchored and combined with a vast intergenerational education program called Back to school +, a concrete, audacious and innovative initiative at the service of the study of the European project and its values for the benefit of the younger generation.
> the promotion of an economic, banking and financial policy that defends the citizens through fiscal and social harmonization. The European Federation had finally taken hold of the social pillar, which now was at the center of the European debate together with the struggle against fiscal drifts.
President Forsythe praised the key role played by the youth, who, he said, demonstrated a magnificent transgression in proposing and implementing a simple and clear project. The project, he believed, presented a huge quality, namely the capacity of preventing European technocracy from turning Europe into a legal monster.
When collective imagination becomes reality
In this anniversary of the new European Treaty, John Forsythe proclaimed in the European Parliament: “We knew that Europe needed mobilizing and symbolic projects, but we have discovered that youth has become, more than ever, strength for change and progress. It has placed itself at the heart of the European renaissance with responsibility, maturity and efficiency, becoming at once a full-fledged player in the choice of orientations and the implementation of the European project”.
It was also a young president, who, twenty years earlier, had pointed Europe towards its common destiny.
“Once upon a time”, the new narrative of a captivating, strong, united Europe.
At the beginning of this 2030, the wishes for a good and happy new year pronounced by President Forsythe are plural, accessible and durable. It is no longer to shooting stars that the President makes wishes; the constellation of stars of the Union is enough, and it now shines of new brilliance.
Hubert Heine, Hélène Decottigny, Bàlint Gyévai, Jules Bejot, Benjamin de Vanssay
We will do it!