A coalition committed to creating a new balance of power in Europe announced six months of mobilization against the EU “austeritarian” choices. Actions at European level shall culminate in an Alter Summit in early June.
During the "Florence 10+10" rally, 10 years after the first European Social Forum in Florence (2002), the "Alter Summit" was launched, with an audience of 850 people from 20 countries in Europe, representing more than 100 organizations, including many unions (national or European), social movements, research institutes and environmental, feminist or anti-globalization organizations. The Alter Summit project also benefits from the support of many cultural and political personalities.
The will to convene this Summit of the peoples and alternatives is based on a call (www.altersummit.eu) that identifies the dimension fundamentally political of the EU crisis: the austeritarian answers are chosen knowingly although they aggravate the crisis, to impose a social order failover to an ultra-liberal - at the cost of millions of jobs, abrupt social decline and significant threats to democracy itself.
At the launch of the Alter Summit, Greek unions and the committee of Greek social movements present at Florence, have expressed their hope that this summit is held in early June 2013 in Athens. “Greece was the European Laboratory for the destruction of social rights”, they said, “but it can also be the laboratory of popular resistance and reclaiming democracy. We need the support of all the peoples of Europe, since each people defending their rights contributes to social rights across Europe”.
Alternatives exist! The peoples of Europe may be free of the burden of debt; austerity must be replaced by the Tax Justice and the creation of millions of jobs for the ecological transition; social rights must be restored, poverty and insecurity - which women are the primary victims - must be fought ; the freedom of collective bargaining fully respected; a fairer and truly democratic society is possible now.
The shared belief is that the centralization of economic and political power (by the Commission, the Central Bank and the European Council) denies the real power of national mobilizations - yet very important: it is therefore to build without delay, the bases of a genuine European social movement. The project is based on the development of national or regional coalitions throughout Europe, and a series of steps in the mobilization.
The day of strikes and actions initiated for 14 November by trade unions in Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece, Malta and Cyprus, and supported by the ETUC (List of actions: www.etuc.org/a/10446) and unions and social movements in many countries, is obviously the first concrete realization of this progressive mobilization that member organizations Alter Summit are calling for. This is a historic event, the first transnational strike of the European history!
“Spring Summit” of March 2013, in which the EU will define its political priorities for the year will be the opportunity for significant protests, whether in Brussels or across Europe. Many other actions are planned (see in particular the final declaration of "Florence 10+10" at www.firenze1010.eu).
The many organizations involved will take until mid-December to confirm and clarify their major program of mobilizations, converging towards the Alter Summit in early June.