CHARTER OF FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS OF THE EUROPEAN UNION and Me--A PETITION
By Kevin Stoda, Germany
Dear Ombudsman of the European Union,
In the "CHARTER OF FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS OF THE EUROPEAN UNION", Article 20 clearly states, "Everyone is equal before the law."
This code or statement seems rather clear. Therefore, I, as an American living and working in Germany for over a year should be seen as equal (and have as equal access to rights and laws in the European Union) as anyone else.
However, this if far from the case.
As an American, I have little or no access to European Union Courts or public services, i.e. as I noted in a letter to the Oberbuergermeister (Mayor) of Wiesbaden recently. This situation would be equivalent to a visa-holding foreigner in America not being allowed access to federal courts (and state or city services) that he as a taxpayer had already been taxed for.
Likewise, Article 21 in the Charter of the European Union states in its first paragraph "Any discrimination based on any ground such as sex, race, colour, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age or sexual orientation shall be prohibited." However, this same article has an unfair caveat that leads to an over 5-year delay in justice before the European Union courts for non-Europeans living and working in Europe. This is because the second part of Article 21 states that part one of the article is to be within "the scope of application of the Treaty establishing the European Community and of the Treaty on European Union, and without prejudice to the special provisions of those Treaties, any discrimination on grounds of nationality shall be prohibited."
Using clearly biased decision-making codes and rules, local German officials in Wiesbaden in Hessen began immediately upon my wife's making of her spousal visa application in April 2009 to deny her the right to join me living and working in Europe. The decisions were imaginative and clearly against the rubric above in Article 21: "Everyone is equal before the law." Obviously, if my wife was American (and not Filipino) she would have come with me to Germany three months earlier. This charade of supposedly illegal due-process continued for over 9 months before I gave up on bringing my wife to live and work in Germany in January of this year.