Presentation on theme: "How to communicate the Lisbon Treaty? Implications from Ireland Cora Pfafferott, COMM/ A2."— Presentation transcript:
How to communicate the Lisbon Treaty? Implications from Ireland Cora Pfafferott, COMM/ A2
My experience Making the European Union Relevant for Women = series of regional conferences to inform women about the EU (2006) First referendum on the Lisbon Treaty in Ireland (2008)
Very few people know what the EU actually does and that there is a division of competences between the EU and the Member States! Reasons why to vote No in first Irish referendum are (mostly) issues of Irish competence My observation
Preparation Meeting with Women Womens issues from the West of Ireland Health, rural development, poverty, education, gender equality, to discuss at EU conferences Example: Health – the lack of breast screening facilities in the West of Ireland BUT: the EU only has very limited competence in health. The Irish Government is responsible for the Irish health system and also for the educational system and social measures against poverty
The Irish Referendum in 2008 Main reasons why to vote No: Taxation Abortion Defence - Conscription Minimum Wage (Loss of Irish Commissioner) Most issues are issues of national competence Irish politicians/ people decide on! But people do not know so they vote NO.
So, how to communicate the Lisbon Treaty? Think of: Who is audience? Women, students, trade unionists, farmers or teachers? Where are they from? What do they know about the EU? What are their political concerns? Make the EU relevant for your visitors group!
Start with the very basics! Division of competences Ask audience: What does the EU actually do? In which areas does the EU legislate/ make law? Illustrate division of competences: – Customs union, trade = EU exclusive competence – Energy, consumer protection = shared competence (EU + MS) – Education, culture = EU supportive, coordinative and supplementary action – Taxation, defence, education = MS competence Refer to Lisbon Treaty that actually clarifies and lists who does what (Art. 3 – 6 TFEU) and then you could start explaining about the functioning of the EU on this basis