Local Labour MEP, Dame Glenis Willmott, hosted a top level European Aerospace event calling on the EU and the aerospace industry to work together to protect local jobs in Derby.
This week’s event was attended by top decision makers in the aerospace sector including the most senior EU official for aerospace as well as Rolls-Royce and Airbus representatives.
Dame Glenis Willmott MEP said: “The Rolls-Royce site in Derby generates thousands of highly skilled jobs in the local area. I have visited the site on numerous occasions and have seen the positive impact of millions of pounds of EU funding, especially in supporting the fantastic apprenticeship programme.
“Today’s event was a great success and I am pleased that the EU and Rolls-Royce are committed to investing in the aerospace sector and the Derby site. With 1 in 11 jobs in Derby being linked to Rolls-Royce; protecting these jobs is critical for the local community.
Simon Hemmings, Senior Unite representative at Derby said:
“Recent redundancies in Derby have had a negative impact on morale at the Derby site and we are in Brussels today to ask what the EU plans to do to protect this industry from competition from India and the Far East.
“I was pleased to hear that the EU is committed to continuing to invest millions of pounds into research and innovation, but we need to ensure that manufacturing is also taking place in the UK.”
Keith Nurney, Rolls-Royce Head of EU Aerospace Research and Technology Programmes, said:
“Derby is our centre of aerospace research and development in the UK. Our workforce is amongst the world leaders when it comes to innovation and Rolls-Royce have called on the EU to continue to invest in the aerospace sector to ensure that our sites like Derby, can create world class engines that are better for the environment.”
Today is International Workers’ Memorial Day (IWMD) and the UN’s World Day for Safety at Work. This marks a time for us to pay our respects to the 100,000 people across the EU and the 2 million people worldwide who die every year because of their work.
Local Labour MEP, Dame Glenis Willmott, said:
“The safety of the UK workforce must be a top priority. The EU has been crucial in protecting millions of workers across Europe through key health and safety laws.
“Every worker has the right to be safe at their workplace. I have been working closely with trade unions who are demanding more protections to prevent the most common of work-related injuries- including neck, back and elbow pain which can be excruciating for some.”
Shaun Lee, Regional Secretary for UCATT representing the construction sector, said:
“This year’s Workers’ Memorial Day theme really strikes at the problems faced by British building, construction and maintenance workers. Our safety laws have been weakened and Government cuts have reduced the level of enforcement undertaken by the Health and Safety Executive. Without the presence of strong unions workers are placed in even greater danger when working on site.”
Dame Glenis Willmott MEP added:
“People may be shocked to hear that 100,000 people in the EU die every year from work-related cancers. We want to tackle this and Labour MEPs are calling on the EU to implement binding occupational exposure limits for at least 50 cancer causing substances.”
“We also want more protection for psychosocial risks. Just because you can’t see that someone is ill doesn’t mean that they aren’t, we want more protections and support for people suffering from stress and harassment.
“The EU has led the fight for workers’ rights in the UK and across Europe. Some Brexit campaigners claim health and safety is just red tape but in reality it’s life and death.”
Commenting on yesterday’s decision by the NFU to back the campaign for Britain to stay in the EU, local Labour MEP, Dame Glenis Willmott, said:
“I am delighted our farmers have decided to back the call for Britain to stay in the European Union.
“The decision by the National Farmers Union for England and Wales to point out to their members and the wider public that “the interests of farmers are best served by our continuing membership of the European Union” is most welcome.
“According to Agra Europe, a UK-based agricultural consultancy, only 10 per cent of the most efficient UK farmers would survive in their current form if we left the EU. This is because EU subsidies provide 50-60% of UK farm income. These subsidies form part of the Common Agricultural Policy of the EU that provides £2.4 billion a year in direct support to UK farmers, topped up with £4.1bn in rural development funds for investments and rural jobs up to 2020.
“The NFU decision to back remaining in the EU is also the right decision for consumers who would face big increases in the price of food in the supermarket if we were to leave the EU. Without the subsidies provided by the CAP food prices would have to rise by 5 to 8%, spelling bad news for most customers.
“UK farmers also enjoy the benefits of trade and the free flow of labour. UK agriculture is highly dependent on access to the EU single market to sell its produce. Close to two-thirds of UK agricultural exports goes to the EU.
“With the UK leaving the EU, our producers would potentially face tariffs ranging from 11% to 48% to enter the EU single market. Moreover, the UK would lose automatic access to other global markets with which the EU has negotiated free trade agreements.
“Consideration also needs to be given to the fact that UK agriculture in general, and its horticulture sector in particular, remains heavily reliant on migrant seasonal labour, mostly from other parts of the EU, especially at harvest time. With immigration restrictions inevitably imposed following our exit from the single market access to this workforce will be seriously curtailed.
“In sum, it is evident that the UK farming and food sector has disproportionately more to lose from withdrawal from the EU than any other sector of the UK economy and with very little ‘upside’ apparent, hence the decision by UK farmers to back staying in the EU is not surprising but is most welcome.”
Data protection is all about finding the balance. We need to protect our fundamental rights, but also ensure the safety of people across the EU.
This week MEPs voted through the EU data protection package and we now have the toughest data protection measures in the world.
This is a major achievement. It gives people control over their own personal data while achieving the right balance between protecting fundamental rights and enhancing police cooperation and the exchange of law enforcement data.
Businesses and consumers will have greater clarity thanks to the new rules, which include the requirement that clear consent be provided for the processing of personal data. The legislation will also require parental consent to be given in order for a child to be able to open a social media account.
The regulation gives us new positive rights including the ability to know when your data has been hacked, the use of plain language in requests for personal data and the appointment of data protection officers in firms handling large amounts of data. There will also be fines for companies that do not respect the rules.
A key aspect of the data protection package involves scientific and medical research. It is important to strike the right balance between ensuring patients’ sensitive health data is protected, while facilitating the safe and secure use of patient data for health research.
Personal data is a vital source for observational studies which can lead to medical breakthroughs on serious illnesses including cancer and cardiovascular disease and this new legislation will ensure that this life-saving research can continue with strong safeguards in place for protecting people’s personal information.
Electronic data doesn’t respect country boundaries. It is only when we work together that we can tackle this issue to protect our rights, find medical cures and protect our country.