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Presidents’ new year’s address

Let’s be honest, on a personal basis we have had better years to look back on than 2021. In March 2020 life as we knew came to a screeching halt for most of us. Since then, returns to something closer to normality have reverted to lockdowns too often for comfort. I have all my fingers crossed in the hope that the extensive vaccination programs available to many of us will mitigate the effects of the latest variant, so that the summer will see a more normal motorcycling programme.

FEMA’s work continues effectively. FEMA staff have continued to work almost always from home, with most meetings being held online. I thank the staff for managing so well in this environment. All of us have had to work differently; FEMA’s Committee meetings were all held online this year. Board meetings have been held online for several years anyway.

Our members
If you hadn’t noticed already two more organisations joined FEMA during 2021, Bikers’ Voice from Austria and Fédémot from Belgium. We look forward to their full participation in 2022.

In 2020 a good deal of political work had to be postponed but in the last year things have improved. Most governments have been in a better position to think about something other than the pandemic. FEMA’s members were able to resume holding some physical meetings and some of us managed to hold rallies and other events; most of us have developed a new set of skills in how to manage COVID-safe events.

Motorcycling is here to stay
You can read an account of FEMA’s work in 2021 here. Obviously, many of the issues covered will remain in the portfolio of work for 2022. A high priority will be given to decarbonisation issues as this has generally moved higher up the agenda for many governments. FEMA will of course be working to ensure that existing motorcycles will continue to be used on the roads but also to encourage government to take a neutral position on new technology rather than focussing narrowly on battery powered vehicles. Ensuring that deployment of even more highly automated cars does not ignore motorcyclists’ safety is also very important. We are all looking to ensure that motorcycling doesn’t go away, whatever the technology employed on our own bikes or other vehicles.

Motorcycling needs you
For FEMA and all its national member organisations to survive, it is crucial to have the support of as many individual riders as possible. So, make sure you renew your national membership (or join as a member today), so we can work together to keep our beloved bikes on the road.

And finally, may I wish you all the best for 2022. Ride safe, keep it shiny side up and come back with a grin!

Anna Zee,