BRUSSELS – As elections for the European Parliament are launched officially today, nearly one hundred candidates have pledged to the Vote For Education manifesto. This group is now composed of candidates from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden and The Netherlands.
Candidates from all of the major political parties in Europe have now pledged to the manifesto, including a wide support of the Green party in France and Finland, including the presidential candidate José Bové. The names of the candidates and their political affiliation is collected on the campaign’s website www.voteforeducation.eu/pledgers
Where to find information?
Although the elections do officially start today in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, they will only finish on Sunday 25 May and the results should be clear soon afterwards. Elections will be held on Sunday in a majority of the EU Member States.
Around 400 million European will have the right to vote in the elections this year that are the eighth since the beginning of the European Union. The European Parliament will keep you constantly updated on the results of the elections, for example on a specially designed Tumblr page.
Results of the elections will also be published on the European Parliament’s website as soon as they are available. They will be provided in open data form, allowing media, bloggers and all users to automatically retrieve the raw data and publish it directly on their online platforms within seconds. For more information, click here.
Democracy is a core value of the EU: Remember to vote!
ESU has strongly encouraged students to take interest in the European elections and vote. The 66th Board Meeting of the European Students’ Union adopted a resolution, where it confirmed its position of democracy being a core value of the European Union that should appeal to all its citizens.
For students, the education sector has been an object for harmful cuts in many European countries and the European Students’ Union stands for education that is publicly funded and equally accessible. Throughout the campaign, the European Students’ Union has promoted education as a public responsibility and measures to reduce inequalities rising from tuition fees, as well as a reform of residence permit regulations for third country nationals.
The European Students’ Union states that the civil society’s voice is important both during the elections and afterwards, therefore, the European student and youth organisations’ work must be supported in the EU budget with operational and project grants. The European Students’ Union acknowledges that the funding for the ERASMUS+ programme rose significantly in the new budget period, but it is not enough to cover mobility among higher education students. Furthermore, the European Students’ Union states that the newly implemented loan scheme for Master’s students should be critically evaluated and take into account the students’ needs and experience to ensure full equality in higher education. It is crucial that the European Students’ Union will be one of the key partners in this process.
The European Students’ Union believes that the European Union was founded on the principles of equality, liberty and democracy. Its decisions should therefore be transparent and involve students as equal partners. For all those reasons, the European Students’ Union appeals to all young people to raise their voices and vote responsibly in the European Parliament elections.
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The European Students’ Union, headquartered in Brussels, is the umbrella organisation of 47 national unions of students from 39 European countries. ESU represents and promotes the educational, social, economical and cultural interests of students at the European level. Through its member unions, ESU represents over 11 million students in Europe. To find out more about ESU, follow us on Twitter @ESUtwt, check out or Facebook page or visit www.esu-online.org. ESU celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2012.