My main reason for remaining in Europe is that life under the current Tory government, without the protection of the EU, will be even more intolerable than it is at present.
Also all the Right wing/fascist organisations within the UK will receive a fillip and stir up hatred and bigotry within our diverse communities.
My aim is to connect with workers across the EU and fight against what many perceive as a capitalist club from within.
Unite the Union has highlighted 10 reasons for hardworking families to remain in the EU:
1. Health and Safety in the workplace ensures that you are protected from potential hazards such as machinery and chemicals.
2. The EU ensures that all workers are entitled to 28 days paid leave per year.
3. Safe working hours – we are not obliged to work more than 13 hours per day or 48 hours per week
4. All workers receive the same rights at work
5. Annual leave is protected if you become sick
6. The EU ensures that men and women receive equal pay
7. Maternity rights
8. Parental leave
9. Protection from discrimination
10. Free health care on holiday
Some have articulated their dissatisfaction as they believe that the UK is “being told what to do by unelected bureaucrats in Brussels”.
My response to this myth is that, firstly, the European commission simply proposes laws which are then debated by the democratically elected European Parliament and government ministers; also only 13.2 % of British laws are associated with Brussels and this includes all references to the EU, however inconsequential!
I understand that EU migrants are viewed stereotypically, en masse, as some kind of criminal element and a drain on our society rather than an asset.
Contrary to this negative belief, EU migrants have contributed more than £20 billion to the UK economy within a 10-year time span, also only 5% of EU migrants claim unemployment benefit.
In fact, the government has failed to train sufficient numbers of skilled UK workers and this has resulted in the requirement to employ migrant workers to bridge this deficit.
This is particularly the case in the NHS and this situation will deteriorate over time, especially now that the government has decided to alienate our junior doctors and has abolished bursaries for student nurses.
Whilst I recognise that there appears to be evidence to support an undesirable alcoholic consumption culture within some EU migrants, this could equally be applied to any group within our communities; also, many people who may once have been described as “immigrants” now pride themselves on being British and add value to our way of life.
Concern has been expressed to me with respect to the “huge amounts of money we spend to remain in the EU”. Whilst it is true that we pay a large sum of money the £350 million per week quoted by other sources is misleading because it has not been adjusted to show the large rebate the UK receives.
It is also difficult to measure the wealth and peace of mind generated, jobs created, health and safety protection, positive climate change measures, and protection for workers as well as all the other positive aspects of EU membership in terms of a financial figure; however, it will almost certainly be worth the expense.