The EU4Health Civil Society Alliance has published a joint paper on the ways to build more meaningful engagement of public health civil society organisations (CSOs) in EU policy-making. The document stresses the key role played by health CSOs and provides elements on how their participation to EU policy-making could be enhanced. Alzheimer Europe is one of 18 organisations to have endorsed the position paper. The joint paper provides five key recommendations:
1. The European Commission should develop, in cooperation with civil society, a dedicated and overarching Strategy for Civil Society as a proactive step towards meaningful civil society engagement.
2. The strategy should promote and strengthen a civil and social dialogue, establish a dedicated civic space on health policy, strengthening and going beyond the EU Health Policy Platform, and avoiding the shrinking space for CSOs. The involvement of health CSOs should grow beyond their inclusion in consultations and expand to programme development, policy debates and agenda-setting for EU strategic priorities.
3. The Strategy should recognise health CSOs for their crucial role in times of crisis, in building the European identity, and in democratic processes, being the intermediaries between citizens and policy makers.
4. The Strategy should provide a clear framework for cooperation with civil society at the EU level, ensuring stability and long-term planning. Key commitments on the protection, financial support and level of independence of CSOs should address the aforementioned gaps in the protection of democracy.
5. Funding frameworks organised by the European Commission should be transparent, multiannual and aligned across the different DGs to avoid any discrepancies between sectors.
Finally, the paper concludes that the European Commission must maintain the momentum on (public) health as a priority within the political agenda over the coming years. The full position paper is available at: