The EU’s attempts to encourage citizens’ engagement through participatory tools has made little impact due to the lack of information and clear follow-up, experts say. “The European citizenship rights we are so proud of can’t make a difference if Europeans are not aware of them,” Estonian MEP Yana Toom told to Euractiv.com (the article by Silvia Ellena).
The 2020 citizenship report shows that over 60% of respondents think that EU citizens are poorly informed about their rights.
On top of that, “the current set-up of the EU participatory framework may leave people doubtful about which channel is more suited to their needs,” a recent Parliament’s report on citizenship states.
Estonian lawmaker Yana Toom, who drafted the report, said the Parliament’s petitions committee often receives requests that are better suited for the European Ombudsman – the independent body dealing with complaints of maladministration by EU institutions.
“This makes me think Europeans might be confused about participatory tools that they should be using,” she said.
A “single platform” and “better guidance to the appropriate tool” are needed to make sure citizens’ voices get heard, said Toom.
“The European citizenship rights we are so proud of can’t make a difference if Europeans are not aware of them,” Toom said, calling for more political education on European affairs.
Read the article here.