#MEAction blog post, 3 Oct 2019: ME activist testifies before EU parliament
Evelien Van Den Brink spoke powerfully and brilliantly to the Committee on Petitions in the European Parliament from her stretcher.
Evelien laid out both an emotional and scientific appeal for biomedical funds for ME. She ended her appeal by saying
“On behalf of all patients, I am asking you, please don’t look away. We are here and today we have made ourselves visible. Please help us to get back to our lives. With hope and determination we can solve this together.”
She finished to well-deserved applause!
We then heard the commission respond with a response this community is used to hearing – we do not fund specific diseases. They did say that they could work to stimulate researchers more and pointed out that the rate of successful applications has been discouraging to researchers but is improving.
Members of Parliament then spoke with support and strength. They referenced hearing from their constituents. Sarah Reed in the UK was specifically mentioned. YOUR VOICE MATTERS! Both members echoed a call for funding and not just stimulating researchers.
One member said to Evelein
“You have not just made ME patients visible this morning you made ME patients powerfully heard in the European Parliament today.” We agree!
Evelien was given a final chance to respond.
“Let us turn this hope into deeds, into concrete action that will improve the lives of many” She ended to rousing applause again.
In the end it was determined that the petition will be kept open Evelien was told,
“ We will not abandon you, We will work together.” “We will not close your petition until we can offer tangible help.”
Evelien thanked Francis who has helped put this effort together. She also gave thanks to #MEAction especially our staff members, Ben and Espe.
Thank you Evelien and Francis for your work!!! We are so proud and honored to have helped in any way. We know that so many EU advocates have participated in this effort.