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Scarp de’ tenis: issue No 250 in May. Sassoli (EU Parliament), “putting the common good, not the good of a few, back at the centre of our priorities”

(Photo SIR/European Parliament)

“With hundreds of thousands of deaths, hospitals on the verge of collapse, our economy and society ground to a halt – a situation we could have never imagined -, this pandemic has exposed our weaknesses, the importance of solidarity, and the central role of health and the common good”. The President of the European Parliament, David Sassoli, stressed this in an extensive article published in the street magazine “Scarp de’ tenis”, issue No 250, supported by Caritas and distributed in several Italian cities by disadvantaged, homeless and unemployed people. “The European Union must shed light on a reality ignored by many, but known to everyone and exacerbated by the pandemic: the extent of poverty and the marginalization stemming from it. Yet poverty does not grow on trees. It is not a virus that comes all of a sudden. One is poor or becomes poor as a result of a totally wrong economic system that puts profit on top of everything else. We must opt out of an economy based solely on unlimited growth, one that does not respect the environment, destroys social cohesion and has caused an exponential growth of poverty in recent years”. The European Parliament, according to Sassoli, “is fully aware that support to social services and assistance to the poorest are key to preserving social cohesion”. And he went on to write: “We need to rethink our goals. The Green Deal is an opportunity for us to create an economic and social system that values the Earth and its resources, instead of preying on them. Now is the time for rebuilding after the devastation. The pandemic has put a strain on our system, it has revealed to us how vulnerable we are, and has shown us that our Union can and must do more; the EU must be given room to act with more autonomy so as to adopt those common policies that are becoming ever more urgent. That is why we launched the Conference on the Future of Europe, which started its work on 9 May”. This is a call to all European citizens: institutions alone can do little if they are not supported by a bottom-up movement, if they do not feed on the lifeblood of the change that is present in each one of us. Over the past twenty-five years, we have faced many challenges. Now is not the time to give up, but to join efforts to defeat the pandemic and shape a new Europe together. […] Next Generation EU provides us with the resources to overcome the crisis, and the Conference on the Future of Europe gives us an unprecedented opportunity to reform our Union and make it more accessible to citizens, more welcoming for children, women and young people, and better prepared to fight the battles ahead. We want a fairer Europe, one that leads to a happier Europe”. “It takes courage. And above all, we want to put the common good, not the good of a few, back at the centre of our priorities”.

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