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European Citizens’ Initiative launched for a freely accessible COVID-19 vaccine for all

Opened until February 2022, the European Citizens’ initiative titled ‘The Right to Cure’ was launched by the coalition ‘no profit on pandemic’ in the hopes of making the COVID-19 vaccine and treatments freely accessible to all, including people with disabilities.

If you are an EU citizen, you can sign it here.

The ‘Right to Cure’ operates on the premise that everyone should have access to safe and effective treatments and vaccines. The initiative demands that: treatments or vaccines be free and available to all; data on production costs, public contributions and the effectiveness and safety of vaccines and medicines be made public; the public control the technologies and treatments developed with taxpayer’s money; and large pharmaceutical companies should not profit from the pandemic.

Key demands of the initiative

Health for all: We all have a right to health. In a pandemic, research and technologies should be shared broadly, fast, across the globe. A private company shouldn’t have the power to decide who has access to treatments or vaccines and at what price. Patents provide one single company with the monopoly control over essential pharmaceutical products. This limits their availability and increases their cost to those who need them.

Transparency now: Data on production costs, public contributions and the effectiveness and safety of vaccines and medicines should be public. Contracts between public authorities and pharmaceutical companies must be made public.

Public money, public control: Taxpayers paid for the research and development of vaccines and treatments. What has been paid for by the people should remain in people’s hands. We cannot allow big pharmaceutical companies to privatize crucial health technologies that have been developed with public resources.

No profit on pandemic: Big pharmaceutical companies should not profit from this pandemic at the expense of people’s health. A collective threat requires solidarity, not private profiteering. Public funds should always come with guarantees on availability and affordability. Big Pharma shouldn’t be allowed to plunder social security systems. At the time of writing this article, the petition stands at 89,600 signatures. 

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What’s an ECI?

A European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) is a petition tool which EU citizens can use to call directly on the European Commission to propose a legal act. In order for an initiative to be proposed to the Commission, 1 million signatures from at least 7 EU member states must be collected.

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