Initiative FAQs:


Q: Is initiative directed to the Commission?

A: Yes, whereas a petition is a method of remonstrance, usually focussing on perceived infringements of European Law, an initiative is a grassroots proposal for new legislation.

Q: Was initiative included in the Swiss Federal Constitution in 1891?

A: Yes, and permitting a certain number of citizens to make a request to amend a constitutional article, or even to introduce a new article into the constitution.

Q: Is initiative in use at the level of state government in 24 states and the District of Columbia?

A: Yes, and is also in common use at the local government level.

Q: Was initiative added to the French Constitution on 28 March 2003 as part of decentralization reforms?

A: Yes.

Q: Is initiative also used at the cantonal and communal level in Switzerland?

A: Yes, many cantons allow initiatives to enact regular non-constitutional law, but the federal system does not.