9th May is Europe Day - an annual celebration of peace and unity in Europe. It is also known as Schuman Day, commemorating the 1950 declaration by French foreign minister Robert Schuman proposing the creation of a supranational European Community.
Those of us working in an EU institution or a European body are quite conscious of the importance of this day. But I wonder how widespread that awareness is amongst our fellow European citizens.
Sixty years after Schuman’s historic declaration, on 9th May 2010 EU-OSHA wants to underline the European Union’s social contribution to the lives of its citizens; this is the day to ask: Do you know what social Europe can do for you?
Taking the circus as its theme, the Social Europe campaign is an initiative of the European Commission that aims at bringing Europe closer to its citizens.
Cooperating with local governments, councils, NGOs, Trade Unions, Employers’ Organizations and many local networks, the Commission has taken to the road to explain what the EU is doing in fields such as job mobility, diversity, equality between women and men, work life balance, opportunities for all ages, training and adaptability, exclusion and poverty AND working conditions.
The Social Europe circus tent will pitch up in many European cities during 2010 showcasing the impact of these social initiatives at local level - real projects for real people giving millions the opportunity to benefit from Europe and also to contribute to a better Europe for all.
Bilbao will be hosting the tent in mid September and EU-OSHA is cooperating with the Basque Government and other local partners to make Europe a reality for citizens.
EU-OSHA’s social contribution consists of working with Member States, trade unions and businesses to make Europe a safer, healthier and more productive place to work.
I think 9th May is a good day to introduce this initiative, but of course we will continue informing you all on further developments!
Until then, have a very nice Schuman Day!