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Call to the European Commission for an EU Civil Society Strategy

21 June 2022

The call

In order to promote a thriving civic space at EU and national level, the European Commission should launch a proactive EU strategy towards open civic space and resilient civil society, giving “genuine political recognition to the crucial role played by CSOs” by filling monitoring, support and protection gaps, and clearly linking monitoring and reporting tools to EU enforcement mechanisms to ensure follow-up. More than 300 CSOs from across Europe sent a letter on 21 June 2022 to the European Commission, via the European Coordination for Civil Society Organisations, calling for a EU Civil Society Strategy in the European Commission 2023 Work Programme.


In its recently released report, the European Civic Forum points at the gaps and challenges in the existing European measures and builds on broadly shared proposals for European actions towards a vibrant European civic space. Check the ECF report factsheet here. Download the full ECF report here: European civil society strategy report 2022_European Civic Forum

Why now?

Calls for a civil society strategy have emerged from civil society all across Europe. On 9 May, the Conference on the Future of Europe adopted the conclusions and recommendations which recognise the important role of civil society at national and European level and the need of a comprehensive European Civil Society Strategy. Given the promises made by the European institutions to respond to the output of the CoFoE, we have a window of opportunity for influence. The call is also included in the European Parliament resolution 2021/2103(INI) of 8 March 2022 on the shrinking space for civil society in Europe voted by a large majority.

Read the full letter here.