The EAPN’s EP2014 campaign is called Campaign for a Social Europe. The European Anti Poverty Network (EAPN) is the largest European network of national, regional and local networks, involving anti-poverty NGOs and grassroots groups as well as European Organisations, active in the fight against poverty and social exclusion. It was established in 1990.
EAPN hopes to mobilize hundreds of European, national and local organizations.
It calls on European Parliament Candidates to make the fight against poverty, social exclusion and inequalities a priority item on the European agenda. It also asks citizens to come out and vote!
Several MEPs have committed to and signed EAPN’s pledge. Follow the hashtag #electingchampions on twitter to find out who is signing as the election campaign goes on.
Despite the European Target on poverty set by the Europe 2020 Strategy to lift 20 million people out of poverty by 2020, statistics show dreadful increases in poverty rates in different EU countries. Between 2010 and 2011, the number of people at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion in the EU increased by 3.7 million (+0.7%), reaching the number of 121.2 million people in 2011 (24.3 % of the entire population). In 2012, 124.5 million people (24.8 %) at risk of poverty or social exclusion. Since 2010, 6 million more people are living in or at risk of poverty in the EU.
“The widening gap of inequalities and the absence of participation of civil society in decision making processes raise serious questions on the gap between the ones who hold the economic and political powers and the rest of the people. People are not fools but feel out of any control or power. We are at a turning point where democracy and peace are seriously threatened,” said Barbara Helfferich, Director of EAPN.
The key demands of the EAPN campaign are:
√ A Social Pact for a Social Europe
√ An effective EU Strategy to fight poverty, social exclusion, inequalities and discrimination
√ Strengthened democracy and civil-society participation
√ An annual Hearing with People experiencing poverty in the European Parliament