On Monday 29th April, at 8:30 AM, European citizens and corporations will compete in a race for justice to call on the EU to end corporate courts. As of today, 555,368 Europeans have signed an online petition to end the controversial private court system (ISDS or ICS in Europe) and to establish a tough global system that can punish multinationals for human rights abuses.
On Monday a group of NGOs will hand over these signatures to the Vice President of the European Commission, Frans Timmermans in front of the Commission headquarters.
Staged by Friends of the Earth Europe, CIDSE, ActionAid and CNCD 11.11.11, this stunt will highlight the need for rights for people and rules for corporations.
WHEN: Monday 29th April, 8:30am to 9:00am
WHERE: Boulevard Charlemagne, Brussels.
WHAT: Two lanes will be installed outside the Berlaymont building: Corporations will race on a red carpet using electric scooters, symbolizing their VIP justice system. Citizens will do a sack-race, showing how they struggle to access justice when their lives are impacted by multinationals. A statue of Lady Justice will preside at the finish line. Commissioner Timmermans will receive a placard with the number of petitioners.
Interviews will be available with the following spokespeople:
- Ike Teuling, Friends of the Earth Europe (corporate accountability) - ENGLISH, DUTCH
- Michel Cermak, CNCD 11.11.11 (investment) - ENGLISH, FRENCH
- Denise Auclair, CIDSE (corporate accountability) - ENGLISH, FRENCH
- Lis Cunha, ActionAid (corporate accountability) - ENGLISH, PORTUGUESE
On 30th April, the European Court of Justice will rule on whether the EU investment protection policy is compatible with EU law. This is an answer to Belgium’s request for an opinion on the CETA investment court system (ICS), following a protracted stand off on CETA, the EU-Canada trade deal, by Wallonia in 2016.
At the same time, more than half a million people have signed a petition calling on the EU and Member States to end far reaching special rights and access to a parallel justice system in trade and investment agreements. It also calls on them to support the achievement of a UN binding treaty to hold transnational corporations to account for human rights violations, and end their impunity.
CIDSE contact: Denise Auclair (auclair(at)cidse.org)