Reconnecting the EU with people
Editorial July 13
Nicosia, Cyprus, its 40 degrees outside and I am on my way to meet with the Ministers of Employment and Social Affairs to discuss the two main EU strategies to get out of the crisis.For the people, the heat on the street is as unbearable as the social consequences of the crisis.
On the road side I can see the flags from all the EU countries. The Cyprus flag is not far from the Irish, Spanish, Portuguese, and Greek flags -all countries that fell into bailout programmes with harsher and harsher austerity measures.
People feel alienated and disconnected from EU policies. They are even going against them.
The Cypriot presidency wants to restore the trust between the EU and its citizens. What we said to the ministers is that we need another Europe. We need a social union with a social pact that supports the poor and those who might fall into poverty; that supports quality employment with which people can have a decent life; that invests in quality services that supports those we care for; and affordable housing for all.
The heat on the social situation will certainly last beyond the summer. And it looks like it will be a long hot autumn especially since the ILO warns that 4,5m more jobs may be lost over the next four years.