Commission communications strategy/Languages for public consultation
Question for written answer E-002327/2011
to the Commission
Olga Sehnalová (S&D)
It is my view that the Commission’s strategy for communications with EU citizens, whether at central or regional level, is inadequate both in its mode of expression and in its chosen channels of communication, but is in particular utterly inadequate and unsuitable for communicating with ordinary people.
By way of example let me take its communications strategy in the case of the Single Market Act, which the Commission published on 27 October 2010. The list of proposed measures was put forward for four months’ public consultation, during which, as the Commission hoped, people would take the opportunity to comment on internal market issues. At the last meeting of the IMCO Committee on 1 February 2011, however, we learned from the Commission representative that so far this option has been taken up by only 150 EU citizens out of a total population of 500 million.
If the Commission really cares about citizens’ opinions it needs to make a great deal more effort. For instance, a major problem for people is the fact that the majority of Commission public consultations are conducted in only three language versions (English, French and German), which discriminates against citizens from other EU countries who do not speak these languages.
I therefore call on the Commission to do its utmost to adapt its communications to the needs of ordinary people, for instance by making all Commission public consultation documents available in all the EU official languages.
Will the Commission be making public consultations available in all the EU official languages?
How does the Commission publicise and present the opportunity for citizens to comment on proposed measures through public consultations?
By what means does the Commission intend to ensure that far more Europeans take part in public consultations in future?
OJ C 294 E, 06/10/2011