Europe on the ground


1 year ago, it all started – My journey as an MEP

1,5 years ago, I gave my campaign speech to be nominated as candidate for the European Parliament. 365 days ago, I really made it – and became an MEP! When starting this job, experienced colleagues said it would take me about one year to be completely set up. But I felt like this already in February: Back then, I started working on my first reports as rapporteur, I had assembled my wonderful team, journalists started calling me and I led my first mission as Head of Delegation. Then Corona hit, and everything changed: with remote meetings, remote plenaries, even remote voting. Even so, now we are fully on track.

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But what happened to the election promises I made in my speech?

  • I want a Europe that protects and supports those fighting for Human Rights globally. Therefore I have started an initiative to ensure that visa regulations are revised in favour for human rights defenders. I am part of a task force and have provided a platform in Brussels for many who cannot raise their voice at home.
  • I want a Europe that fights for just globalisation and takes companies to court that destroy living conditions elsewhere. That is why I am so glad to see that progress is being made on a due diligence legislation. And it is the reason why I am fighting arms exports hard, calling for more transparency and accountability on the kinds of weapons that leave the EU.
  • I want an EU that makes sure that peace activistis and not warmongers sit at negotiation tables – and yes, 50 percent women. Our initiative report on a feminist foreign policy is in negotiations and the European Commission has signalled that it will take up a number of our demands for its Gender Action Plan.
For peace I spare no conflict. Recent weeks have shown us how precious our European Union is. For us – but also for those who fight for political freedom and justice elsewhere. My work in parliament has just begun. But it has been an amazing journey so far. And I hope I can continue to live up to the expectations you have placed on me. Thank you for sending me here. And please continue following my work!

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