People use ballot box to reject austerity policies
(8 May 2012) Workers, their families and communities have had an opportunity to express themselves on the austerity policies of their governments as pursued in tandem with the European Commission during recent local, regional and national elections this weekend. The results demonstrate that the extremely divisive set of policies undermining social rights and slashing public services are not supported by large parts of the population.
The newly elected French president François Hollande stated in his speeches that the choice made by the French people would have implications for Europe. He would push for a strategy of growth and investment.
EPSU very much welcomes this approach. It reflects that people support alternatives to austerity Europe, that they reject the misery Europe as promoted by the conservative parties, corporate interests and neo-liberals. Trade unions and many other organisations have persistently argued for such a change.
EPSU General Secretary Carola Fischbach-Pyttel states: "The misery Europe promoted by EU Commissioner President Barroso and EU Council President Van Rompuy does not offer public service workers a perspective. The Commission President has argued that Member States “need to show more ambition” in their austerity measures. Nurses, firefighters, teachers, police, prison guards, city townhall workers and so many others disagree. They would vote both out of office given a chance. Europe urgently needs policies that promote social justice, democracy and equality, that create jobs and end poverty”
Elections took place in France (Presidential), Greece (parliamentary), Germany (Regional) and UK and Italy (Local)