MEP Samira Rafaela; It’s a wrap!

It’s a wrap! Since 2019, I have served Europe and the Overseas Countries and Territories as a Member of the European Parliament for Renew Europe. In 2019, I received the support of many citizens in the wider Kingdom of the Netherlands. The historic support I received from the Caribbean islands is etched in my heart. Last week marked my last week in Strasbourg, so all official activities have concluded. In December 2023, I informed you of my decision not to participate in the elections again. Over the past few months, it has become increasingly clear to me that this is a good and balanced decision for myself.

I look forward to the next steps I will take. One thing I can already announce is that I will take on the role of Visiting Fellow at Cornell University in New York, where I will be associated with their impressive Global Labor Institute to delve further in the areas of Corporate accountability and Forced Labor. I am beyond excited and honored. My other endeavors shall remain a surprise.

I marked the end of my mandate with a great gift; In my capacity as lead negotiator, last week, I swept the new EU Forced Labor Ban through the European Parliament with a convincing 555 votes in favor. More than 27.6 million people can now expect better standards and policies from Europe. To me it feels similar to an olympic sprint marking the end of a tough but fulfilling marathon.

My gratitude is immense towards a wonderful team of advisors who have supported and helped me over these years. Without my team and (former) staff, I would not have accomplished these achievements. I realize that you have made my work and results, our results, possible. Examples vary from the new law on Pay Transparency, the new and inclusive trade agreement with Chile, and the Forced Labor ban regulation. Behind every successful politician are strong and intelligent advisors. I thank you with all my heart! The policy advisors of my group Renew Europe have also been of great importance. All the secretariats of the committees and the administrative staff have ensured that I could withstand my work and the difficult negotiations. The European Parliament is kept running every day by thousands of people, so that 705 Members of the European Parliament can stay focused on their work. This deserves great recognition.

In the coming months, until the formal resignation as a Member of the European Parliament, namely July 17, I will take the opportunity to speak and thank everyone I have had the privilege to work with. As an office, we have had the opportunity to work with my brilliant MEP colleagues, many organizations, companies, governments,experts, and individuals. Including the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Masha Danki.

On May 2, I will launch my initiative ‘Europe to the Street’ at venue Pakhuis de Zwijger, a grassroots and cross-party initiative to bring European politics closer to the citizens. I will continue to strive for a more inclusive Europe!


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