Access Info Launches New ‘Pledge Campaign’ Initiative To Fight For Greater Lobby Transparency In The EU
The campaign, focusing on European Parliament elections in May 2014, seeks commitments from MEP candidates to fight against corporate lobbies’ excessive influential power in the decision making process in Brussels.
Madrid, 10 January 2014 – Access Info has launched a new project in Spain in the lead up to the 2014 European Parliamentary elections. The Pledge Campaign, in partnership with organisations from across Europe, aims to secure commitments from European Parliament election candidates to improve the transparency of lobbying activities in the EU, and reducing the excessive influence of big company lobbies in the European legislative process. The campaign will be coordinated by ALTER EU, the European coalition for lobby transparency of which Access Info is a steering committee member.
To prepare the launch of the Pledge Campaign in Spain, a group of organisations that will actively participate in the campaign gathered at Access Info’s office in Madrid on 7 January 2014. At the meeting were present CIECODE / Proyecto Avizor, Salud por Derecho, CECU, InspirAction and CIVIO. All of them agreed a set of actions which include the creation of a website that will serve as a reference point to all those who are interested in increasing their knowledge about the damaging effects of lobby’s excessive power and the measures that could be taken to avoid this.
The campaign will bring together organisations from at least 10 EU Member States to carry out simultaneous actions across a range of channels. Always with an eye on the European Parliament elections at the end of next May, and profiting from the fact that during electoral campaigns candidate MEPs tend to be more sensitive to these kinds of initiatives, the Pledge Campaign aims to persuade the largest possible number of candidates to commit to include in their political agendas explicit measures for greater transparency of lobbying in Europe.
The Pledge Campaign aims to obtain commitments from approximately 700 candidates across Europe, out of which about 200 could be voted into the European Parliament, more than a quarter of the total number of MEPs.
The initiative tries to benefit as well from the unique political situation of voters over candidates during an electoral campaign, seeking to promote citizen empowerment through active political participation. To achieve this, the Pledge Campaign will open communication channels between citizens and candidates, allowing citizens to transmit to the candidates themselves their demands concerning lobby transparency.