May 9th is not only a day among many others: it is Europe Day. During that day people are supposed to celebrate united Europe. Sadly, an enormous number of people cannot celebrate it properly, because they are, for instance, at work or school.

Europe and the European Union are both worth celebrating more than we do right now. With the help of free movement, Europe has become a sort of the second homeland to many Finnish nationals, not to mention all the other benefits ordinary citizens gain from the EU. For that reason, the current situation in which people cannot attend any events or in other ways cherish Europe and the EU requires a change.

If Europe Day was a national holiday, people would be more able to concentrate on Europe and the European Union. While doing something else, people have a great risk to totally forget that May 9th is a special day that is worth celebrating. This would also help increase the awareness about the EU because Europe Day and the EU are deeply connected to each other.

By making Europe Day a national holiday, Finland would show its commitment to European values and to the European Union, which are both worth defending today, when populism and Corona-virus are challenging them. As a country committed to both of them, Finland has a duty to protect them. And by appreciating Europe Day properly, Finland can show that it considers them valuable.

There are enough good reasons to make Europe Day a national holiday and to give the appropriate value to it. The only thing needed anymore is a small change in Finnish legislation.

 

For further information:

Antti Avoranta, Vice Chair
antti.avoranta@jefhelsinki.com
045 324 3949