Blog Posts

Our Foundation has singled out political rights as the one reform which is essential to give substance to EU citizenship. 14 million EU citizens have rights to vote in local and European elections in their country of residence, but not in regional and national elections. Moreover, citizens of Cyprus, Denmark, Ireland, Germany (after 25 years …

On Thursday 4 February 2021, a hearing of the Committee of the Regions (CoR) on the European Citizens’ Initiative took place. We presented our Initiative to the CoR. The European Union has not only been able to create an economic and market union, but also a real union of people through freedom of movement. Unfortunately, …

The upcoming regional elections in Catalonia that will choose the new Parliament will take place on February 14th, after the TSJC rejected delaying them until May, arguing their immediate necessity due to “intense public interest” in the balloting. More than 5.6 million citizens will be able to exercise their fundamental voting rights and shape the formation of the next Govern …

Portugal’s Presidential elections on Sunday, 24 January, saw three winners and one loser – the loser being the actual voters.  Centre-right President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa — endorsed by the Socialists (​PS​) — was re-elected for a second-term, receiving a strong 60% of the votes. In addition, André Ventura, leader of the far-right party ​Chega! …

In welcoming participants, Tony Venables, the Founder of ECIT, drew attention to the Foundation’s 12-point programme of priorities which can be found HERE and which would certainly be shaped by the discussions. He then explained by way of introduction what ECIT expected from each of the 6 sessions.[1] “Give me a reason to love Europe, …

Northern Ireland’s unique position On 31 January 2020 the United Kingdom left the European Union. All EU law ceased to apply to the UK on 31 December, making it a ‘third country’. Hence, citizens of the UK can no longer benefit from EU rights such as the freedom of movement, the right to address a …

This was Sinéad O’Keeffe’s speech to the European Commission for ‘ECI Week’ on the topic of online campaigning in the time of Covid-19. Good morning to all, Dia daoibh go léir, My name is Sinéad O’Keeffe and I am a member of the Voters Without Borders European Citizens’ Initiative. Our ECI strives to give real …

Share on facebook Share on twitter Share on linkedin Share on email A new breakthrough for the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) demanding full political rights for EU citizens on the move The youth-led task force “Voters Without Borders” launched its campaign: “All I want for Christmas is my vote” on 15 December on the square …

9.7 million people — the fifth-biggest diaspora in the world according to a report of the Department of Romanians Everywhere — is getting ready to vote for a continuous two days for the diaspora parliament representatives on the 5th and 6th December 2020 Romanian Parliamentary Elections. After decades of poor electoral organization in the diaspora, which resulted …

Ireland is one of five EU Member States (Cyprus, Malta, Germany and Denmark) that deprives its diaspora of the right to vote in national elections on account of residence abroad under varying conditions. This is on the basis of the assumption that expatriates are not affected by political decisions taken in their country of origin. …

On Sunday 11 October, the first round of the general elections were held in Lithuania to elect 71 of the 141 representatives of the “Seimas”, the Lithuanian Parliament. Whereas the second round, which took place on the 25 October, elected the remaining seats, it seems likely that a coalition government will be formed by the …

“Next year, we will propose clearer rules on the financing of the European political parties and take action to ensure greater transparency in paid political advertising, improve the electoral rights of mobile Europeans and take action to protect journalists and civil society against strategic lawsuits against public participation.” — European Commission 2021 Work Programme The …

“In Austria, you have to be an Austrian Citizen to vote at the provincial elections, because the capital, Vienna, is both a city and a province I cannot vote here at all. In addition, Denmark does not allow citizens who are not living in Denmark to vote for local elections. So as a Danish citizen …

Dear Voters Without Borders supporters, We, as The Voters Without Borders team, have issued a complaint on 1 October to Didier Reynder, the Commissioner of Justice of the European Union, regarding issues due to the Covid-19 pandemic that EU mobile citizens are facing when exercising their right to vote. On Sunday, 27 September 2020, Romania …

On 27 September 62% of Swiss voters decided in favour of keeping freedom of movement between their country and the EU. This is a welcome result particularly in a period of restrictions on European freedoms for 450,000 Swiss citizens living in EU Member States, 1.4 million EU citizens living in Switzerland and 330,000 frontier workers. …

La vittoria del SÌ al referendum costituzionale del 20-21 settembre ha ridotto il numero di parlamentari eletti nella circoscrizione estero. Le conseguenze del taglio ci impongono diripensare il processo democratico tanto per chi vive in Italia quanto all’estero. Article by Beniamino Brunati Tra minacce di una nuova ondata pandemica, promesse di governo e disinformazione dilagante, …

In the Report on the 2019 Elections to the European Parliament released on 19 June 2020, the European Institutions make the point on the consultation and indicate a series of measures in line with Voters Without Borders’s objectives to strengthen voting rights for mobile citizens in the bloc. The European Institutions have recently issued a …

During the European Parliament Elections of 2019, never as before, young people were very involved and enthusiastic about promoting the importance of voting at EU level. Their increased interest in the EU was almost unbelievable. The ECIT Foundation Summer University that took place in September 2019 was the occasion where civil society realized that, indeed, …

Can you imagine a bunch of Erasmus students coming from different regions of Europe meeting together for the classic pub crawl activity, and speaking Latin as the lingua franca instead of English? “Well, unless they are extremely drunk and trying to impress each other, “probably not” would be the answer I most likely expect. But …

Since coming to Belgium to study abroad, it is difficult not to notice the differences between the United States and Europe. When making comparisons, often people see one as better or worse, but truly they are just different! Here are 5 differences between the US and Europe I see as the largest distinctions between the …

Times call for a radical changes in the way European democracy is ran, and the Conference on the Future of Europe is the best opportunity to make a step forward. But only if citizens and civil society organizations are duly included in the reform process. As the mandates of the 8th European Parliament and of …

This is what children in Italy are drawing. The main features are notable: a rainbow, a peaceful landscape and reassuring sentences. #Andràtuttobene” means everything will be alright — this is how children are sending a positive message to the world, while #iorestoacasa is now one of the most used hashtags in Italy to encourage people …

Since 1992, with the Treaty of Maastricht, EU mobile citizens can vote in local elections. In France, there are, according to the French statistic centre¹, 1,851,000. All of them should be able to vote, nevertheless, among them, according to the French newspaper Ouest France², only 318 788 are enrolled in an electoral list.  There are …

If the 2019 European elections have been quite the success in terms of turnout and involvement of the young population, they could not be qualified as “smooth sailing” for all EU citizens.  The 2019 European elections were shaped by the significant increase in voter turnout. 50.66% is in fact the highest turnout since the 1994 …

Allow EU citizens to vote in regional and national elections and referenda in their country of residence, and strengthen their existing rights to vote and stand in European and municipal elections: this is the objective of the latest European citizens’ initiative registered by the European Commission.  What is at stake are the full political rights of …

Hi there, My name is Robert and I am from Romania. Having studied three years in the UK, now I am finishing my Master’s in European Studies in Belgium. Since quite young, merely 19 at the time, I took my chances as a European citizen and pursued studies abroad in the field of development studies. …

There is a silent, echo-less quarantine: that of EU citizens abroad. Little has been said about it, or rather, only when sensationalized by the media or when criticizing those of us who tried to go back home. We mobile citizens abroad have done (and are doing) a double quarantine. We locked ourselves at home with …

If I told you that, as a European citizen, you have rights that you do not even suspect, would you believe me?  To all those who are curious or sceptical, let me introduce you to what is probably the least known right attached to European citizenship: European consular protection. European citizenship offers many rights that …