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06/03/2013

‘As European as we get’, with Civil Society Day 2013 in Brussels

Today civil society representatives from across the European Union came together in Brussels to celebrate European citizenship as part of Civil Society Day 2013: ‘As European as we get! Bringing economy, solidarity and democracy together’.

The Day is the flagship event for the European Economic & Social Committee (EESC), involving key civil society organisations workshopping citizenship solutions against a backdrop of financial and social doubts across Member States. 

Ms Viviane Reding, Vice President of the European Commission, was keynote speaker at the event among others, including Staffan Nilsson, President of the EESC, and Jean-Marc Roirant, President of the European Civic Forum (FCE) and Co-chair of the EESC Liaison Group.

Marking the European Year of Citizens 2013, the annual event illustrated the importance of active participation in the EU for individuals across all Member States.  The day was dedicated to debates about what civic participation genuinely means, and how commitment can be improved in the EU by these organisations and individuals.

Delegates explored how the economic, social and civic dimensions of EU citizenship could be reinforced across Member States, with discussion workshops today opening important dialogues on issues of interest to stakeholders at a European level.

Important discussion topics for the day included exercising rights and engaging in civil society on a national level, strengthening the legitimacy of the EU and its institutions through participatory democracy and engaging youth in civil society.

Civil Society Day was co-organised by the EESC and the European Year of Citizens Alliance (EYCA), which is comprised of more than fifty major European civil society networks.

For further information on the EESC and Civil Society Day, including the full programme for the Day, presentations, and pictures please go to: http://www.eesc.europa.eu/?i=portal.en.home

 

(from left to right) Jean-Marc Roirant, Staffan Nilsson, Antigoni Papadopoulou and Christophe Rouillon in the opening session of the Civil Society Day in Brussels on March 6th

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