Brussels, 06 February 2013
PRESS RELEASE – Erasmus is still in danger!
25.000 sign petition to save Erasmus
Since the end of last year, the successful “Erasmus programme” – the European exchange programme for students – is under fire from some national governments which want to reduce its funding.
Last October, when the first announcements of potential cuts to the Erasmus Programme hit the news, students and young people all across Europe were outraged. Within a short period of time, initiatives and petitions – such as the online campaign “SaveTheErasmusProgramme” run by the European Federalist Party – were started and gathered tens of thousands of supporters. Thanks to this work, the funding for the Erasmus Programme was secured for 2013.
But now, new rumours anticipate that there may be cuts to the Erasmus Programme as from 2014,. The EU is currently debating the new long-term budget (“Multiannual Financial Framework”) for 2014-2020 and several member states demand for sharp cuts in research, education and youth programmes. In addition, some member states such as Spain have already reduced some of their grants for Erasmus students and demand students abroad to repay their grants.
The European Federalist Party considers the Erasmus Programme of key importance for European youth, which was hit the hardest by the current financial crisis.
As pointed out by Pietro De Matteis, co-President of the European Federalist Party: “This is unacceptable! The process of European integration cannot continue by just implementing treaty changes. On the contrary, it requires people to think and act as Europeans. By allowing young people from all over Europe to live side by side, the Erasmus Programme has arguably made the greatest contributions to building a “Europe of citizens”. We cannot allow this Programme to be discontinued just because of budgetary constraints. The future of Europe is at stake”.
To date, more than 25.000 people have already signed a petition supported by the European Federalist Party to save Erasmus and nearly 60.000 have supported the Citizens’ Initiative Fraternité 2020, which calls for better funding for all EU exchange programmes.
Media information: The two co-presidents of the European Federalist Party can be contacted at:
Yves Gernigon: firstname.lastname@example.org
Pietro de Matteis: email@example.com
The European Federalist Party (EFP) is the pan-European party for a more democratic, united and solidary Europe: a Europe of the people and for the people. The EFP was founded in 2011 in Paris by citizens from all over Europe and has since developed into a cross-border movement with thousands of members and supporters and chapters in 9 EU states. The EFP was instrumental in the introduction of several key laws and reforms in the EU, including improvements to the Lisbon treaty, the European Citizens’ Initiative and the EU roaming regulation.
More information at www.federalistparty.eu