11 Mar 2008 Column 221 People may remember that we would have preferred may

11 mar 2008 column 221 people may remember that we

This preview shows page 71 - 74 out of 102 pages.

11 Mar 2008 : Column 221
Image of page 71

Subscribe to view the full document.

People may remember that we would have preferred “may” rather than “shall”; we had to argue again and again about what the direction to “participate” will mean. Paragraph 74 states: “We draw attention to the provisions relating to the ‘opt-in’ on amendments to existing EU measures, where we consider a stronger position could have been achieved.” Paragraph 75 states: “We are concerned that the interpretation of the red line to ‘protect UK civil and criminal justice’ as only requiring control of the decision to opt in or not does recognise the loss of protection that will occur every time jurisdiction is transferred from UK courts to jurisdiction by the European Court of Justice and the Commission.” So, we had many concerns, but we have many more reasons for offering support. Throughout the debates, I have read into the record parts of the actual treaty—in particular, the consolidated treaty numbers and what they say—because I believe that there are many reasons to support them. My right hon. Friend the Member for Leicester, West (Ms Hewitt) spoke of some of those. My right hon. Friend the Member for Leicester, East (Keith Vaz) spoke fluently and in a reasoned way, and my right hon. Friend the Member for Rotherham (Mr. MacShane) also gave lucid reasons for positive support. The economic and social balance has been switched back slightly towards the social and away from the problem that people have with unabated free market economics. On human rights, the charter of fundamental rights has been opposed. I cannot understand how anyone can oppose what is in it, because most of it is in our own Human Rights Act 1998. That is the way it should be, but we seem to have got upset in a way that makes no sense to me. What is wrong with having human rights throughout the whole of Europe? The rights of children throughout Europe are in the treaty for the first time, which is very positive. The rights of the elderly—intergenerational solidarity—are in the treaty. There are employment laws and rights—not just in the charter of fundamental rights, but in the treaty. The protocol on services of general interest will protect not only the ferries to the islands of Scotland, but many social services, if they are designed specifically for the needs of the people for whom they are provided. There are links, on the basis of economic and social welfare, to education and skills, and an education White Paper is being considered in Europe at the moment. None of that is compulsory; it is advisory and it is good practice. That is how we should try to transfer good practice across the EU. On intergenerational solidarity, I recommend that people get hold of the report and read it. The analysis is that, by 2030, there will be 30 million fewer people of employment age—of work force age—in the EU. We have to face up to that and think about how we can extend people’s work life and make work life more accessible—for example,
Image of page 72
perhaps for those with disabilities. We must also consider how to draw into Europe
Image of page 73

Subscribe to view the full document.

Image of page 74
  • Fall '08
  • Finklerberg

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern

Ask Expert Tutors You can ask You can ask ( soon) You can ask (will expire )
Answers in as fast as 15 minutes