Our 2020 celebration of the European Union on 9 May has been affected by the pandemic. Like every year, we were working hard and looking forward to opening our doors to thousands of people. We were expecting you all to join us in a celebration of Europe, animated by the enthusiasm of our volunteers, members and staff. But it's not to be, and we cannot tell you how much we will miss you all. This is a little tribute to your resilience and commitment.
We at the European Economic and Social Committee work hard every day to make sure that it stays this way. Check out our recent work in the documents and position papers available on this webpage.
My thoughts are with the victims of coronavirus (COVID-19) and their families. Our solidarity with them is strong, and this webpage gives you some examples of what our members are doing to deal with the consequences.
2020 is a very special year, with many things to celebrate, not least of which is 75 years of peace. It is also 70 years since the Schuman Declaration, a major initiative that would change our continent completely. Back in 1950, Robert Schuman wished for "a wider and deeper community between countries long opposed to one another by sanguinary divisions". He would be proud to see what the EU has become.
Let's not be misled by the current crisis: I remain convinced that Europe must be even more united and self-confident. Europe has become a place that protects us, a shared place of rights and obligations providing peace, safety and development that cannot be undone, and a strong voice in the world that cannot be ignored.
We represent civil society and remain focused on the general public and organisations. We cannot open our doors physically this year, but they remain open virtually and our enthusiasm remains intact. As always, you are all most welcome!
Happy 9 May!
Isabel Caño, Vice President of the EESC