EPLO functions on the principle of added value to its member organisations. Its work complements the activities of its member organisations, drawing upon their specific expertise and joining their forces in areas better dealt with together. EPLO advocates for its ideas by developing common positions and promoting these to the EU institutions and other policy decision-making bodies through position papers, campaigns, press and media promotion, participation in conferences and seminars, and regular meetings with institutional representatives and other relevant actors.
Joint approaches on wider policy are reached in consultation with all member organisations. Common positions may if necessary include minority positions. If a member organisation feels arguably compromised in its core values, it can call upon the Steering Committee to negotiate a solution.
The EPLO General Assembly meets once a year and is EPLO’s decision-making body. It is where constitutional decisions are taken by all member organisations, and where elections for the Steering Committee are held. In accordance with EPLO’s external statutes, the Steering Committee selects EPLO’s President, Vice President and Treasurer. The General Assembly decides on strategic multi-annual plans and bi-annual work plans on the basis of proposals prepared by the Office and the Steering Committee. The General Assembly also decides on membership admission and the principle structure of the Working Groups and other groups which develop EPLO’s policy positions.
EPLO staff members report to the General Assembly on the results of EPLO’s work and gather inputs from member organisations.
The Steering Committee consists of between five and seven members. Steering Committee members are elected for two-year terms by a two-thirds majority of the votes of members present at the EPLO General Assembly and proxy votes. Steering Committee members are proposed by their organisation or another member, are generally the EPLO representatives of that organisation, and have the seniority to engage their organisation. They are elected in a personal capacity and on the understanding that they work in the interest of EPLO, independent of their professional commitments elsewhere. Steering Committee members contribute their professional experience on a voluntary basis and seek to represent the best interest of EPLO as a whole and of all its members. The Steering Committee meets as necessary but at least four times a year.