Improving the European Citizens’ Initiative strengthens participatory democracy 

The European Citizens’ Initiative is set to become more accessible, inclusive and easier to use.

In order to foster democratic debate and participation, MEPs will discuss measures (agreed with the Council since mid-December) to improve the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI), on Monday. The new rules will be tabled for approval on Tuesday.

The new mechanism will make it easier for European citizens to get information and support to make their voices heard in the European institutions. It will allow citizens to set up, run and manage initiatives online, and support an initiative (regardless of their place of residence in the EU).

Background

ECIs were introduced by the Lisbon Treaty, in April 2012.If one million citizens, from at least one quarter of EU member states, produce a signed petition, they can urge the European Commission to take action.

Approximately nine million Europeans from all 28 member states have supported an ECI to date. Four initiatives have been successful in collecting over one million signatures, and the Commission has committed to follow-up actions, on three of those.

Debate: Monday, 11 March

Vote: Tuesday, 12 March