Our president Michael Bauer recently participated in the Conference on the Future of Europe. The conference is collaboration between the European Parliament, Council, and Commission, and created to foster the input of EU citizens in the creation of a common European future. This was done through the creation of several digital platforms, decentralised events, and citizen panels, to get input from EU citizens on things such as climate change, education, and European democracy. The results of these citizen processes are then discussed in a plenary meeting.
At the most recent plenary meeting, the Third Plenary Session of the Conference on the Future of Europe, president Michael Bauer was precent to represent Humanists and the rights of non-believers. In the meeting Bauer discussed the importance of the right to freedom of belief or non-belief and of conscience, and the freedom of individual life stances and lifestyles, which includes the right to bodily autonomy and a specific focus on the rights of women with regards to pregnancy and abortion, all of these are important freedoms, but freedoms that can only be available within a reliable and stable rule of law. President Bauer discussed the importance of citizens’ freedom, self-determination, and a fair rule of law, as the main pillars of Humanist values, and how the protection and strengthening of these are a core task of the European Union.
The European Way of Life has become more important in recent years, both as a political topic as well as a social reality, as we see it being used and misused by many extreme right politicians. President Bauer’s presence at the plenary meeting brought up the importance of establishing this European Way of Life within the framework of human rights and a just rule of law. The advocacy of the EHF focusses strongly on not only promoting human rights and rule of law, but also on moving the EU to focus on these issues as well.