A couple weeks ago, Emmanuel Macron was elected president of France, as the entire world watched. Now, he is being called upon to make WordCamp Europe easier to attend.
In a letter sent to the office of the president, WCEU organizers explained that some attendees were experiencing problems with their visas.
“It has come to our attention that our friends from some countries are having problems with their Visas being rejected on the ground that ‘a 40€ entry fee can not justify international travel,’ something that makes this conference accessible to all,” the letter said.
The organizers go on to say that the goal of WordCamp Europe is to bring WordPress users together, and the best way to do that is to make it as affordable as possible. The team has worked to keep ticket prices low so a wide variety of people could attend. But now they are worried problems with visas could keep people away.
The letter cites President Macron’s history of acceptance, as well as the current climate, to make a case for a more inclusive and accepting visa process for WordCampers.
“In you, Mr. President, we see our ally. We share the same values and passion as you – and the same goals. We want to make this world a better place, and we know that people are afraid of anything that is different or unknown,” the letter said.
The letter asks the president to “unblock this situation” in an effort, not only to bring more WordCampers to Europe but to show the open and welcoming nature of France as a country.
“We feel that France, a country that gave us so many artists, inventors, athletes and political leaders, is a perfect place to show that unity once more. Now more than ever,” the letter said.
As of right now, there hasn’t been a response from the office of the president, or the president himself.
WordCamp Europe is on track to be the biggest WordCamp to date with almost 3,000 tickets sold. It will take place from June 16-17 in Paris, with a Contributor Day on the 15. Tickets are still on sale, but going fast.