Proposal to the European Social Movements: Call of Florence
For a Europe of Social rights
Here, in the wealthiest continent of the world, in the European Union, poverty and social insecurity are the rule for one inhabitant in three, because citizens cannot access the fundamental rights to work, income and housing.
These fundamental rights will not be recognized in the future EU Constitution if we do not react.
The EU Convention, decided during the Laeken-Brussels summit in December 2001, is indeed preparing the future EU Constitution. Its works will end in March 2003. The EU governments will then take the decision during the Summits of Thessalonika (June 2003) and Roma (December 2003.)
The Charter of the fundamental rights, adopted during the Nice Summit in December 2000, will be the preamble of this Constitution.
We did demonstrate in Nice to oppose this Charter which does not recognize our right to work, to income, to housing. And today the EU governments are about to integrate this Charter, as it is, excluding any social right, in the future EU Constitution.
This is not acceptable.
If a constitutional process does not initiate a real debate with the populations about the rights concerning everybody's everyday life, this process is just not legitimate.
Today, when the EU is about to officialize this non-recognition of the social rights through a constitutional text, our fight is necessary. This fight, which has started in the streets of Nice, must develop today.
We demand that the following rights are guaranteed by society to any individual living on its territory.
We do reject any kind of Europe which would prove unable, through its laws and its acts, to guarantee every inhabitant these most basic social rights.
We say no to any social dumping, and yes to a levelling up of social rights: any established social right in each country must be considered as a minimum social right.
We all have the responsibility on our continent to defend the established social rights identified to the "European social model": a defeat in Europe would accelerate the social dumping and impoverishment throughout the world.
We are mobilizing today, and we will mobilize as well in Copenhagen, Thessalonika, Rome, and everywhere that the European leaders will meet, in order to demand our social rights without any discrimination of age, sex or origin, for all the EU inhabitants.
The movements which support this call will be working on the different mobilizations to impose these rights.