Civil Society Fighting Back

Using Tools With Real Teeth 

In a recent article I wrote for Bloomberg, I detail the ways in which Civil Society can fight back against the wave anti-democratic legislation sweeping Europe. The Soros-funded Central Europeean University in Hungary isn’t the only non-governmental organization under attack in Europe.

The European Commission finally looks prepared to take Hungary to court over its crackdown on a George Soros-funded university. But while the Commission’s announcement marks a welcome change from its previous reluctance, it is no help to many civil society organizations (CSOs) who find their rights infringed but in less high-profile ways.

In in my latest book Lobbying for ChangeI detail the various intruments citizen-lobbyists and civil society organizations can use to fight back against these illiberal attacks. These instruments have until now been rarely used by civil society due to a lack of information. Unknown to many, these tools the European Union has provided for civil society are formidable.

European law is powerful weapon in this arsenal, and allies can be found at the European level that can help civil society fight back. The Good Lobby can assist by providing legal expertise and other support. And if these organizations can strategically use EU law in the national courts, and eventually the European Court of Justice, to fight back, then maybe the EU itself will be emboldened to take a stronger stand.

Lobbying for Change