Make the Referendum Invalid!

Hungarian non-governmental organisations, including the Hungarian Europe Society, condemned the anti-refugee referendum announced by the government in a joint declaration on 14 September 2016. They advice citizens to boycott the referendum or to submit an invalid vote.

Let's Invalidate the Hungarian Refugee Quota Referendum!

We, Hungarian NGOs and citizens with a sense of responsibility for our country, believe in a country where our common matters are managed with humaneness, solidarity and mutual respect. We are concerned about seeing the government threaten our common values, therefore we speak out against the referendum scheduled for October 2, as well as the hate campaign surrounding the vote.

We decided to start a campaign to invalidate the referendum, which fails to promote our common concerns and is both pointless and inhuman.

'Pointless' question
The question put to referendum fails to promote our common concerns. It does not offer a solution either to the situation of refugees or the future of the European Union. It rejects solidarity with our fellow human beings in plight, just like with the other European member states. It has no intention to create a framework for peaceful coexistence. We are convinced that nobody can feel safe in the long run where public discourse is defined by hatred.

The question put to referendum is pointless. No provision on compulsory "resettlement" quotas has ever been adopted, let alone discussed, in the EU. If such a question were put on the agenda in the future, Hungary would have a place at the negotiating table.

Moreover, the response given to the referendum question does not entail any specific legal consequences, nor does it make clear exactly what entitlement the government asks for from the citizens, as this has never been revealed.

'Shattered solidarity'
The question put to a vote is also inhuman. The goal of the referendum and the accompanying campaign is to incite hatred against refugees. Its only potential consequence is the further weakening of the already shattered social solidarity, thereby reinforcing the government in continuing with its hate campaign.

The real question that is going to be at stake on October 2 is whether this country will ever be able to become a humane community. This is the goal we work for 365 days a year — on October 2 and on every other day.

Some of us will cast an invalid vote, while others will boycott the coerced anti-refugee referendum. Our goal is nevertheless the same: to invalidate this referendum.

Join us, share our statement, talk to your friends, colleagues and neighbours. Convince them, too, thus we can prove together: our country is based on humaneness and solidarity.

List of protesting NGOs: Artemisszió Alapítvány, ElevenEmlékmű, Eötvös Károly Közpolitika Intézet, Független Előadó-művészeti Szövetség,Gyerekesély Közhasznú Egyesület, Hálózat a Tanszabadságért, Hívatlanul Hálózat, Humán Platform Egyesület, Közélet Iskolája, Krétakör Alapítvány, Magyar Helsinki Bizottság, Magyar Női Érdekérvényesítő Szövetség, Magyarországi Európa Társaság, Magyarországi Evangéliumi Testvérközösség, Migration Aid, MigSzol, Oktatói Hálózat, Oltalom Karitatív Egyesület, Opera Közhasznú Kulturális Egyesület, Segítsünk együtt!, Szépírók Társasága, Társaság a Szabadságjogokért Népszavazás: 22 szervezet állt össze az érvénytelenítésért. 14 September 2016