It’s a common question. That can be answered in a mind-boggling range of ways. After all, the EU is huge. But does this necessarily mean it is distant, over-complicated and irrelevant to you and your life?
We are all familiar with the idea of getting together to purchase a better gift for a friend than we would be able to afford individually. When this concept is scaled-up to Continental size however, the scope and the sums become rather harder to grasp on a personal level.
To help you to bring the EU down to an approachable size, Antonio Tajani, President of the European Parliament, today launched a website providing information on examples of the real-life deliveries that result from EU policies.
‘There is no one-size-fits-all response to the question of “What does Europe do for me?” – this site aims to provide citizens with answers that address their questions from their unique perspective.’
Popping the EU bubble
Are you a cyclist? Do you use your smartphone on holiday? Are you worried about the air quality in your city? Are you a bus driver, a brewer or even a bee-keeper? Or are you a young person with a great idea for your own business? The EU has nothing to do with that, right? Wrong! While the EU leaves much of the regulation of your daily life to your national government, it tries to help where doing things together beats doing them alone.
Wherever you live in Europe, as an EU citizen you have the right to expect that EU funding is spent on improving your life. Sometimes the money spent by the EU is not easily visible, however, as it’s redistributed through a variety of programmes and by different national, regional and local players, who often add funding themselves.
Without using complicated and insider jargon, the site looks at what the EU is doing for you at the human scale: whether in your region, or in your personal life.
So, what does the EU do … for you?
In May 2019, Europeans like you get to make their views clear by voting in the European elections. Recent interference in campaigns in Europe and elsewhere underlines the dangers of people not having access to the information they need to be able to make up their own minds as to how to vote.
The researchers working for the European Parliamentary Research Service have produced 1 800 short notes on what the EU does for anyone from pet owners to parents, and brewers to bee-keepers, as well as a selection that showcase the EU projects that benefit your home region. They are used to producing independent, objective and authoritative information that is useful for all of the Members of the European Parliament, so you can be sure that the content is not linked to any particular political point of view.
‘Every citizen will be able to find information about what Europe has done for them, not only major legislative initiatives but also smaller changes that have helped improve lives.’
The site will continue to evolve – and we look forward to receiving your feedback. We continue to work on finding interesting facts and projects from your region. At the end of the year, the European Parliament will have an app available for you to download with additional news and information for citizens.
This is an excellent opportunity for you to get your own information about the policies that you pay for. Why not take a look?