Infringement proceedings against Germany!
No to attacks on free movement – yes to a citizens’ Europe!
Germany in breach of EU law – the Commission must act!
Freedom of movement is one of the greatest achievements of the European integration process and one of the most visible benefits that the European Union bestows upon its citizens. There is a broad social and political consensus on this issue in Germany. And yet the German Parliament has adopted legislation that reflects a spirit of mistrust and national narrow-mindedness. The proposed restrictions on free movement send out a devastating message.
The planned entry bans for false claims to a right of free movement are incompatible with Article 15 of the Free Movement Directive. Entry bans may only be imposed on the grounds of public order, safety or health – provided that there is a genuine, present and sufficiently serious threat to one of the fundamental interests of society. Not even previous criminal convictions as such constitute grounds for entry bans, let alone an erroneous claim for social benefits. And although this type of action may in some cases involve a false claim to free movement, it is certainly not a threat to society’s fundamental interests.
On 16 January 2014, the European Parliament called on Member States to refrain from any actions that could affect Union citizens’ right of free movement. Regrettably, the governing majority in the Federal Republic of Germany has failed to comply with this demand.
The challenges relating to free movement cannot be overcome with restrictive policies. Instead, in order to achieve an ever closer union of the peoples of Europe, constructive and far-sighted policies on freedom of movement are needed. These should include broader protection against discrimination, faster progress towards recognition of professional qualifications, easier access to language learning opportunities, and, in the medium term, the establishment of minimum standards of social security in the European Union.
We urge the European Commission to initiate infringement proceedings against the Federal Republic of Germany so that those elements of the new legislation which are non-compliant with EU law are repealed – if necessary through a judgment in the European Court of Justice!
Sign the petition here!
Please read our letter to the President of the European Comission.
Further information (German only).