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Local Labour MEP backs plans to make e-payments safer

credit cardsThe increase of smartphones and mobile devices now means that people shop differently. You no longer have to pay for everything in person and e-payments are being used more than ever. East Midlands MEP, Glenis Willmott, has been calling for EU measures to be put in place to ensure that e-payments are safe and secure for individuals across the region.

Glenis Willmott, Labour MEP for the East Midlands, voted this week for a report that proposes to make electronic payments more secure. The report will also give consumers more rights, and encourage more competition and innovation.

The plans aim to improve consumer protection against fraud, possible abuses and payment incidents, and promote competition through a regulatory framework that will make it easier for new and innovative providers of mobile and internet payments to enter the market.

Consumers will also have greater rights for refunds on debit card transactions.

Glenis Willmott MEP, Labour’s leader in Europe, said.

“Today’s agreement is an important step forward in making electronic payments for consumers safer as well as encouraging competition and innovation.

“Increased competition in this section will help drive down costs which we expect to be passed on to consumers across the UK and Europe.

“Making payments over the internet and with your mobile phone will now be safer than ever and opening the market allows new companies to offer more services that will make our lives easier.”

Open letter: East Midlands- much more than just pork pies!

apple pieDear Editor,

We all know about the excellent local food that is produced in the East Midlands from Melton Mowbray pork pies to Bramley apple pie filling.

These products with specific characteristics attributable to the East Midlands are protected at EU level. This prevents cheap knock-offs being sold and keeps jobs here in the East Midlands.

However, the East Midlands is known for much more than just great food. We have traditional handicrafts such as Nottingham lace and Denby pottery, and natural resources like the beautiful Clipsham limestone.

These items aren’t protected and Labour MEPs have been campaigning to change that. This week, Labour MEPs voted in support for a report that is part of a campaign to extend geographical protection to authentic, original, non-agricultural products.

This would mean that cherished traditional local products, made in the East Midlands, could only be made in the East Midlands.

This campaign is great news for consumers and industries that are producing authentic local goods, and will make it harder for factories half way round the world to pass off cheap knock offs as originals.

Unfortunately, UKIP MEPs from the East Midlands either didn’t turn up for the vote or voted against this report.

However, Labour MEPs will keep supporting this campaign as we believe this is a win for local producers, distributors, employees and of course consumers.

Yours faithfully,

Glenis Willmott
Labour MEP for the East Midlands

Open letter: Gender pay gap

Dear Editor,

This week, Labour MEPs voted in favour of a report calling for the law on equal opportunities in employment to be updated and strengthened across the EU, with targets to combat the gender pay gap. Disappointingly, Tory MEPs voted against the report, despite the fact that women in the UK earn just 81p an hour for every pound a man earns.

Labour MEPs have also previously called for large companies to publish their gender pay disparities. With figures that show the pay gap as even wider for top earners, this should be a welcome initiative.

Meanwhile, at Tory Conference, David Cameron announces the start of an ‘assault on poverty’ – with women disproportionately affected by poverty, equal pay should be an obvious first step.

Cameron then declares that he wanted a world in which his daughter earns the same as her male colleagues when she enters the world of work.

Surely a good start would be asking his own MEPs to support paying women the same as men?

Luckily for the UK’s women, Labour MEPs are committed to equal pay, and will continue to fight to achieve it.

Yours faithfully,

Glenis Willmott
Labour MEP for the East Midlands

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