What is it? What does it do?
The European Parliament is the only European institution directly elected by the citizens of Europe. Composed of 785 directly elected members from 27 Member States, the European Parliament is the largest multinational legislative parliament in the world. It meets in Strasbourg once a month in plenary and in Brussels for committees, political group and delegation meetings and mini plenary sessions.
The parliament represents 492 million citizens of the Union.
Subsequent Treaties have given the EP the power to amend and even veto proposed directives. Legislative power has progressed from the merely consultative role given to it by the Treaty of Rome (1957), where the Commission proposed and the Council decided legislation to the present situation where the Parliament and Council now share the power of decision in a large number of policy areas.
- Power over the budget. The EP approves the Union's budget every year and the President of the Parliament signs the budget into law.
- Control and Oversight of the executive including the power to dismiss the Commission.
Submitting a Petition:
A Petition may be defined as a complaint, a demand for action, or a request for review. The European Parliament's Committee on Petitions examines matters raised by citizens and takes appropriate action.
You may submit a petition if you are:
- A citizen of the European Union.
- A non-Community citizen residing in a Member State of the European Union.
- A legal person or association registered in a Member State.
- A matter of general concern.
- An individual complaint.
- A request for the European Parliament to take a stance on an area of public interest.
More information about Petitions and the European Parliament in general can be found on the parliament's website at http://www.europarl.eu.int