Social Europe Network calls for a stand against inequality

03/05/2018

Pervenche Berès

Rising inequality is one of the biggest problems facing Europe, and addressing it is at the heart of our fight as socialists and social democrats. This was the conclusion of the PES Social Europe network, which met in Brussels today.

Representatives of PES member parties, social partners and MEPs discussed the rise of inequality, the European Commission's social fairness package, and how to give priority to social issues in the next EU budget (Multiannual Financial Framework).

The network developed concrete policy proposals to combat income and wealth inequality in Europe, ensuring a democratic society and economy that serves the people.

Pervenche Berès, chair of the PES Social Europe Network, said:

"Today our network strongly restated its support to fight inequality in all spheres of our societies.

"The high levels of inequality which we are facing are not automatic or inevitable. They are the result of political choices that shape policies and structures that guide our economy, determining how we live together. As socialists we are continuously challenging these policies and fighting for reshaping these structures.

"This includes ensuring an economy that puts people first, where all workers, whatever their status, are protected and benefit from decent jobs. It includes strengthening the Social Fairness Package (for a strong European Labour Authority that guarantees fair mobility, for decent working conditions and access to social protection for all workers, including those of the digital economy) and closing its loopholes, as well as guaranteeing European funds that serve social objectives.

"Our society only has a viable future if inequality is successfully addressed. Therefore combatting inequality must be an institutional priority, at the top of the EU's political agenda. As PES, we will keep on fighting to achieve this."

Read the PES discussion paper on combating inequality

List of participants

  • Pervenche Berès, Chair of the PES Social Europe Network, MEP, PS, France (S&D)
  • László Andor, Professor, former Commissioner, MSZP, Hungary
  • Teuta Vodo, Deputy Minister of Justice of Albania, Socialist Party, Albania
  • Serkan Köse, Member of Parliament, SAP, Sweden (S&D)
  • Fabian Molina, Member of the Parliamentary Committee for Foreign Affairs in Swiss Parliament, SP, Switzerland
  • Angelica Schempp, Representative of SP Brussels Group, SP, Switzerland
  • Ariadne Mavronikola, Party Representative & Policy Officer, SPÖ, Austria
  • Georgi Pirinski, Member of the European Parliament, BSP, Bulgaria (S&D)
  • Michael Detjen, Member of the European Parliament, SPD, Germany (S&D)
  • Tibor Szany, Member of the European Parliament, MSZP, Hungary (S&D)
  • Agnes Jongerius, Member of the European Parliament, PVDA, the Netherlands (S&D)
  • Emilian Pavel, Member of the European Parliament, PSD, Romania (S&D)
  • Javi Lopez, Member of the European Parliament, PSC, Spain (S&D)
  • Rory Palmer, Member of the European Parliament, Labour, UK (S&D)
  • Yoomi Renström, Vice-President in charge of Social Affairs, PES Group in the Committee of the Regions
  • Olga Fotinou, Political Adviser, PES Group in the Committee of the Regions
  • Conny Reuter, Secretary General, Solidar
  • Jos Bertrand, President, ESO
  • Steven VanDenBroucke, Secretary General, ESO
  • Yonnec Polet, Deputy Secretary General, PES
  • Esther Lynch, Confederal Secretary, ETUC
  • Maureen Hick, Policy Adviser, UNI Europa
  • Livia Hentschel, Policy Officer , DGB
  • Alexis Le Coutour, Policy Adviser, CEEP
  • Gilberto Pelosi, Advocacy & Policy Officer, Social Platform
  • Flavia Colonnese, Policy Officer, European Youth Forum
  • Livia Gregusova, Political Advisor, S&D Secretariat
  • Lara Ianthe Wolters, Political Advisor, S&D Secretariat
  • Maja Miernik, Intern, S&D Secretariat
  • Lara Gerecke, Assistant to MEP Joachim Schuster, SPD, Germany (S&D)
  • Leonie Rinke, Assistant to MEP Schuster, SPD, Germany (S&D)
  • Roy Breederveld, Assistant to MEP Jongerius, PVDA, The Netherlands (S&D)
  • Ellie Walden, Assistant to MEP Palmer, Labour, UK (S&D)
  • Katja Ziska, Policy Assistant, PES Woman
  • Constantin Kourkoulas, Head of Policy Unit, PES
  • Antoine Mertzeisen, Policy Adviser, PES
  • Marie-Therese Findeisen, Policy Assistant, PES