The youth centers involved in the EUYOU project continue to implement the third and fourth types of local events. All events due to the current situation take place virtually. The third type of events is related to democratic participation and learning about the functioning of democratic institutions in Slovenia and the rights of mobile EU citizens, and the last in the series of events is dialogue with decision makers, which aims to provide young (mobile EU) citizens with local and national decision makers. This week, local events were held at the Celje Youth Center and the Carinthian Youth Cultural Center Kompleks.
Celje Youth Center held the third event, namely the workshop Democracy in Slovenia and the EU, on Monday, November 9th 2020. The participants of the online workshop got acquainted with the organization and functioning of the political systems and the possibilities of democratic inclusion at the local and EU level. Participants also reflected on the concrete challenges and obstacles to the integration of mobile EU citizens into local democratic communities and developed an interesting debate on when young people are mature and capable of political decision-making. They touched on the possibilities of civic education in schools and shared opinions on the differences between the chances of success between men and women and on the difference in salaries. The workshop was also used to prepare questions and suggestions for political decision-makers, whom they will have the opportunity to meet at the last event.
The last, fourth, event organized by KMKC Kompleks took place on Thursday, November 12th 2020. The event was attended by 12 young participants, all coming from the local community. They talked to a local decision-maker Mojca Erjavec, prof. ang., prof. nem., MSc in European Studies (University of Leuven, Belgium), who is currently active at the local level as a municipal councilor and chair of the municipal committee, is also the head of the cabinet of the Minister of Labor, Family and Social Affairs in Ljubljana, and gained her experience through many years of service in Brussels for the EU administration in various posts.
In the conversation with the decision-maker, they first discussed her story, work, mission and involvement in society. Various questions followed, such as: What can you, as a decision-maker, do for mobile EU citizens and for all your citizens in your municipality, and what would you like to do to improve their lives? How can mobile EU citizens turn to you? What problems do you perceive as mobile EU citizens turning to you? What is the difference between an administrative unit and a municipal administration? The interlocutor gave comprehensive answers to all questions and thus upgraded the knowledge of the participants.
After the “official” part, the moderator gave space to the participants and their questions. At this point, a debate developed about finding a job and how we Slovenes are valued abroad and that it is necessary to apply for as many opportunities as the EU offers us. They also touched on the Scandinavian countries and the job search process. Finally, they also touched on the integration of EU policy and local politics, and how citizens feel this integration at the local level, where the decision-maker explained the course of legislation from European to national, and consequently also to local.