We are coming together to mark the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Rome in the full knowledge that we must change Europe, to stop it from falling apart, to avoid a social and environmental catastrophe and to keep authoritarianism at bay.
Our common heritage, built on victories and progress in the area of rights and democracy, together with our welfare state, is being eroded, as are our hopes and aspirations.
In recent years, because of unfair treaties, austerity, the predominance of finance, the rollback of entitlements, increasing job insecurity and discrimination against young people and women, Europe has also experienced an increase in inequality and poverty.
Today we stand at a crossroads and must choose: between saving human lives and saving banking and finance; between fully guaranteeing and gradually eroding human rights; between peaceful coexistence and war; between democracy and dictatorship. Mistrust, fear and social insecurity are increasing, while racism, reactionary nationalism, walls, borders, and barbed wire are on the rise.
Another Europe is necessary, urgent and possible, and it is up to us to create it. We must denounce policies that threaten Europe’s very existence; demand supranational democratic institutions that truly have a popular mandate, and are adequately resourced; respect the rights enshrined in the European Charter of Human Rights; defend positive achievements; propose alternatives and fight to make them a reality whether in the Mediterranean area or beyond Europe’s borders.
We need an innovative and courageous plan for European unity: a plan that guarantees a viable future for everyone based on democracy and freedom, rights and equality, a willingness to embrace gender issues, social and climate justice, dignity for people and the work they do, solidarity and openness, peace and environmental sustainability.
Instead of putting the Italians, French or English first, we must put everyone first: northern, southern, eastern and western Europeans; people born here and migrants alike; men and women.
Let Rome be a wellspring of solidarity and unity that allows us to create a framework that transcends our differences and equips us for the challenges facing us on our continent and all over the world.
We invite you to respond to this call, to promote, within this common framework, other upcoming events and gatherings in Italy and all over Europe, and to come to Rome on 23, 24 and 25 March, to engage in initiatives, meetings, actions and activities that will allow us to stand together, in solidarity.