De Jong: European Parliament seeking to avoid referenda

24 March 2011

De Jong: European Parliament seeking to avoid referenda

Tens of thousands of trade unionists demonstrated today in Brussels against the harsh austerity policies imposed on the member states by the EU and the European Commission’s plans to meddle in national incomes and pensions policies. ‘Yesterday the European Parliament decided that referenda on these drastic economic plans must be avoided,’ says SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong. ‘The people should, in the EU’s view, have no say over their own future. The SP, on the other hand, wants to see these plans put to the voters in a referendum.’

Proposals from the European Commission will give Brussels influence over incomes policy, state finances and retirement ages. The European trade unions have already stated that wage negotiations should be between employers and workers, and that Brussels should keep its nose out of collective bargaining rights. The SP agrees completely is supporting today’s demonstrations.

European Parliament sidelines democracy
Yesterday the European Parliament even excluded itself from any involvement in the impending treaty amendment, renouncing its right to co-decision and satisfying itself with a consultative role. “Add to that the express intent of the Parliament to keep the people of the member states well away from the decision-making process and you can only conclude that Brussels wants to give the people as little influence as possible over these plans, which is unheard of in those who are supposed to represent the people’s views.”

The SP was today present at the trade union demo, pictured below:

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