Address or City (Public information)

Berlin, Germany





On November the 1st 1980, the first Federal Congress of the Young Liberals was held in the former german capital Bonn. To sum up the first steps in the process of formation, three mayor points should be pointed out: 1 – The establishment of Young Liberals is based solely on a personal initiative of young members of the FDP and against the will of the party leadership at that time. At the beginning of JuLis was a group of young FDP members who did not feel home in the strongly left drifting former FDP-Youth-Organisation named Young Democrats. In January 1979 coordinating committee were formed, in order to build up a new liberal youth organisation, as it became forseeable that the former youth-organisation would split up from the FDP soon. After a few meetings which resulted in a drafted constitution and a number of political key positions the coordination committee planed and organised the first national convention of the Young Liberals in November 1980. Hans-Joachim Otto from Frankfurt, who is now Parliamentary State Secretary to the Federal Minister of Economics and Technology, was elected as the first chairman of JuLis. 2 – The process of beeing recognized as the only and official youth organization of the FDP took three years – in 1983 JuLis finally replaced the former liberal youth organization, named German Young Democrats (Judo) as they divided from the FDP into a rather more left political ideas without connection to the values of the former “senior party”. After the Association of JuLis was founded, the next goal was the recognition as the official youth organisation of FDP. The first step was taken in Lower Saxony, where in 1980 JuLis have been recognized as a working group of the lower saxonyan FDP. The trend continued and by 1982, almost all national associations recognised JuLis as their youth-represantatives. At the end of the social-liberal coalition (September 1982) the former youth organisation Young Democrats finally split up from the FDP. The political circumstances increased the chances of JuLis rapidly and by November 1982 the Party Congress of FDP decided to have JuLis as their official Youth Organisation. At the same time Hans-Joachim Otto was elected in the FDP Federal Executive Board. In November 1983 Guido Westerwelle, who later not only became the FDP-Partyleader, but also germanys minister of foreign affairs, was elected as president of JuLis and took over Hans Joachim Ottos work. 3 – The JuLis then, after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1990, became the first all-German youth organization in the united Germany. The political successes within and outside the FDP led to a rapid consolidation of the position as official Youth-Organisation. Guido Westerwelle remained president of JuLis till 1988, beeing followed by Georg Neubauer, Beppo Brem and finally Christoph Schenk. With the end of the cold war and the reunification of Germany the political focus of JuLis had to adept to the new situation. Allready at the end of 1988 a new youth organisation next to the FDJ was built up in east-germany. This group of young liberals than in November 1989 was recognised as an independent youth organization of the Liberal Democratic Party. Shortly after the first contacts with the West German JuLis, East German JuLiA were granted organizational support and started common political projects of cooperation. After a very difficult merge-negotiations, particularly on the statute and the self-image of all-German Association, the unification congress of JuLiA and JuLis took place in September 1990 in Berlin. This first Federal Congress of the now all-German Youth Association of the FDP elected Birgit Homburger as their first president. Birgit Homburger was able to move in the German Parliament in the same year and helped not only to shape the process of unification of the associations and their political direction, but also increasing the political influence of JuLis. Ralph Lange (1993-1995) and Michael Kauch (1995-1999) were ellected as Birgit Homburgers successors. In 1999 Daniel Bahr, who is the German minister of healthcare nowadays, was elected as JuLi-Chairman. Daniel Bahr led the JuLis over five years. In this period not only did the JuLis increase the number of active members to nearly 11,000 young people, but also became more important in political everyday-business of the FDP. Daniel Bahr was elected as member of parliament in 2002, when finally in march 2004 Jan Dittrich followed him as chairman of JuLis. After Dittrich hat to resign because of a political scandal, Alexander Alvaro became the substitue-leader of the association for a few months. At the 30th Federal Congress, the student Johannes Vogel was elected as leader of the national board and stayed in charge till 2010, after being elected as a member of parliament in september 2009.. Since 2010 JuLis are lead by Lasse Becker. With the general election of 2009, the Young Liberals are represented with 17 of 93 FDP deputies in federal parliament. The Young Liberals, with that number, are the most influential youth organization of all partys in German Bundestag. Liberal youth organization in Germany: The Young Liberals, or just JuLis were the first all-German Youth Association. Even before the unification of Germany, JuLis had built up joined forces. In September 1990 Young Liberals action of the GDR (JULIA) and the West German Young Liberals, built up a new all-german youth organization. Today, the Young Liberals consist of roundabout 10 000 members, of whom over 1,000 are from the new federal states. The JuLis are the youth wing of the FDP: Alltough the JuLis are the official youth organisation of FDP, not all members of JuLis must be members of FDP in the same time. In order to implement political ideas into FDP – JuLis sometimes have to behave brash and persistant, which lead to the allmost classical image of JuLis, beeing “the torn in the flesh” of FDP. As JuLis are convinced that society and policy can only be changed from inside the poitical organisations, they seek to cause changes with working inside of the FDP. Only active participation, initiative and dedication will help to solve the current and future problems. Especially the Young Liberals fall for that very reason also problems of the coming generations, free from thinking in terms of office. The problems of our generation, we take in the great policy and call on the FDP to consider this. That is why the JuLis understood as a liberal lobby of youth. Basis for the policies of JuLis are the liberal principles. The individual takes precedence over groups, associations and the state. The expansion of freedom in government, business and society are at the forefront of our actions. Nevertheless, in humanistic tradition, responsibility and freedom are connected.