ISCA Secretariat: Vester Voldgade 100, 2, DK-1552 Copenhagen, Denmark - CVR 29 50 05 41 Tel: +45 29 48 55 51 / [email protected]


20 European Parliament representatives supported No Elevators Day

ISCA’s No Elevators Day on 25 April not only expanded to three more continents this year, but also gathered support from double the number of members of European Parliament as last year, plus the European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Vytenis Andriukaitis.


Our team visited the European Parliament in Brussels on 24-26 April to speak to MEPs from across the political spectrum about physical activity and find out more about the parliament’s new Stairs to Health (Take the First Step – Use the Stairs) campaign, led by Slovakian MEP Vladimir Manka, S&D.


What do they think of the day? Read their comments below and watch our videos here and here


Miroslav Mikolasik, Member of European Parliament, EPP, Slovakia

“No Elevators Day is a very smart idea and I am supporting not only as a member of European Parliament but as a medical doctor. Being in the European Parliament as a politician I think it is a fantastic idea, very smart, and it is inviting members and also all kinds of bureaucrats in the European Parliament to move and not to sit every time but to burn calories and to do something for their health.”


Rory Palmer, Member of European Parliament, S&D, UK

“I think it’s something I’d like to see more workplaces and more office building and public buildings adopt. It’s often the easy choice is to get in the lift on the way to your office. Taking the stairs is a great way to get more physical activity. It’s good for health, good for wellbeing so I think it’s a great idea and I hope lots of people get behind it.”

Emma McClarkin, Member of European Parliament, ECR, UK

“NowWeMOVE and No Elevators Day is a brilliant example of what we can do to try to make people think a little differently about putting activity into their day-to-day lives.” (2:20) (2:27) Our lives are getting busier and busier and we do need these initiatives to remind us that we need to also be thinking about our health and our wellbeing.”


Andrey Kovatchev, Member of European Parliament, EPP, Bulgaria

“This is a very good idea to motivate our colleagues but also the staff of the European Parliament to use the stairs because some people say, and they’re right, that sitting is the new smoking.”


Eduard Kukan, Member of European Parliament, EPP, Slovakia

“Especially for us, members of the European Parliament, we are sitting such a long time, you know, so for us movement is very important to keep fit. So this is really the place where it is necessary to promote this kind of movement. We really need it.”


Jeroen Lenaers, Member of European Parliament, EPP, Netherlands

“Just to take the stairs instead of the elevator once or twice a day really helps to keep a little bit fit. I mean if I look at myself, a year ago I was 123kg and I’ve lost 30 kilos in the last 9 months and one of the things I do indeed is instead of taking the elevators take the stairs once, twice a day, and it just helps. It really makes you feel fitter.”


Marc Tarabella, Member of European Parliament, S&D, Belgium

“If we can sometimes take the stairs, 10 stairs or 20 stairs, it’s better than taking the lift for one floor. And I think we have to promote this behaviour, and thanks to you for doing that.”


Vladimir Manka, Member of European Parliament, S&D, Slovakia

“I believe that with your help and with the help of your activities, because they are really compatible, we have a common goal, and we will be able to make the whole of Europe move and bring positive impact not only on the EU institutions’ employees.”
Seb Dance, Member of European Parliament, S&D, UK
“I think it’s a brilliant initiative. One of my bugbears since being elected is the design of this building, that the stairs are nowhere near the lifts and that obviously encourages people to use the lifts because they don’t know where the stairs are. So now obviously we have the initiative to show people where the stairs are and I think that’s a very important initiative. And I think that No Elevators Day is an important part of that, because it reminds people that actually staying active, being active promotes physical wellbeing and of course it prolongs life expectancy.”
Nils Torvalds, Member of European Parliament, ALDE, Finland
“In the Parliament you fairly often experience that people take the lift from just 0 to 1 or from 3 to 4 and I always get very upset because they’re stealing my time and they’re actually stealing possibilities to improve their physics [sic] also.”
Sean Kelly, Member of European Parliament, EPP, Ireland
“Actually I’ve noticed since the campaign started here more people are using the stairs so sometimes it becomes blocked because there is a traffic jam, step back and let others come down – ladies first, of course.”
Alain Lamassoure, Member of European Parliament, EPP, France
“In this building, my office is on the 13th floor, so I manage three days a week, twice or three times a day to walk up the thirteen flights of stairs… and in the last year I managed to lose 10 kilos and be back to the weight I was when I was 30.”
Margrete Auken, Member of European Parliament, Greens, Denmark
“It’s absolutely a good idea and for sure, if you do that you don’t need to go to fitness centres and all this. Then you can just make sure you are kept alive in your body and in your brains.”
Ivan Štefanec, Member of European Parliament, EPP, Slovakia
“It’s a pretty good campaign because it helps to move, it’s necessary to show people that really it’s necessary to move and to be active and also to change our habits because sometimes we have some limits and some barriers and we don’t even see what are our opportunities, so sometimes it’s good to change our ways and how to move and to use stairs instead of elevators.”