Noelle O Connell highlights key issues from Irish National Report at Conference on the Future of Europe Plenary in Strasbourg
25 March 2022: Noelle O Connell, National Citizen Representative to the Plenary of the Conference on the Future of Europe presented the Irish National Report at a Plenary of the Conference on the Future of Europe in Strasbourg this afternoon.
Commenting on the report which details the results of citizen engagement on the Conference on the Future of Europe across Ireland, Noelle O Connell said,
“Over 70 events have taken place in Ireland for the Conference that have included over 4,500 people from islands, minority groups, young people and community activists. Two key issues stood out from Ireland’s citizens’ panels. The first issue is that people in Ireland want the EU to better communicate EU policies, and to highlight the interconnections between such policies. One such area is education where there was huge interest in expanding the opportunities provided by the Erasmus programme.
“The second is that the EU should be a tool that can communicate best practices between Member States, to the benefit of Member States, across all policies areas.
“We heard from people that the EU should introduce measures that would solve common financial cross-border issues, such as pensions, inheritance, car insurance and taxation, as it would help EU citizens move more easily between EU Member States, tying into the EU’s goals on Capital Markets Union and Banking Union.
“On climate change and the environment, people called for the EU to move towards recognising climate refugees and become more proactive when it comes to supporting climate refugees.
“Finally, participants also recommended that the EU should ensure that people in Northern Ireland should continue to have access to their fundamental EU rights in spite of Brexit, an issue that continues and will continue to impact the island of Ireland.”
The Conference on the Future of Europe is a Europe-wide initiative to involve people in Ireland and across Europe in a debate about the EU’s future challenges and priorities. For more information, visit https://www.europeanmovement.ie/conference/ or follow #IrelandCOFOE .
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- About European Movement Ireland: Founded in 1954, European Movement (EM) Ireland is the longest established Irish NGO working on European affairs. An independent, not-for-profit, membership organisation, EM Ireland works to develop the connection between Ireland and the European Union. We facilitate links between all sectors of Irish society and the EU, through advocacy campaigns, education programmes, training courses, information briefings and networking events. For more information, visit europeanmovement.ie.
- The Conference on the Future of Europe is a Europe-wide initiative to involve people in Ireland and across Europe in a debate about the EU’s future challenges and priorities. European Movement Ireland is a key organisation involved in engaging with Irish citizens as part of the Conference on the Future of Europe in Ireland. European Movement Ireland’s work involves regularly engaging in conversations about Europe with people living in Ireland. EM Ireland’s core work is to ensure that citizens have the tools to engage with the EU and European issues. EM Ireland’s panel discussions are supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs as part of a series of similar such events being organised virtually around the country as part of the Conference on the Future of Europe.