The economic policies of the EU have had catastrophic effects on the lives of its citizens – Ní Riada
Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada has joined with a number of other MEPs from the GUE/NGL political grouping to release a declaration condemning the European Union's current economic and fiscal policies, and calling for alternative policies.
Speaking from Brussels, Ms Ní Riada said,
"The economic and fiscal policies of the European Union have had catastrophic effects on the lives of many of its citizens. At the core of these policies are the Fiscal Compact, the economic governance, the Banking Union and the European Semester.
“The gap between the rich and poor in the EU is constantly increasing, social rights are being dismantled, unemployment (especially youth unemployment) remains at high levels and the people of the member states are being subordinated to poverty and stagnation.
“In signing this declaration we are demanding real public investment, higher wages, stronger wage bargaining, stronger collective bargaining, combating tax avoidance and tax evasion, and promotion of progressive taxation.
A member of the European Parliament Budgets Committee, Ms Ní Riada said,
“Democracy must be strengthened through an increased role for the national parliaments and the European Parliament, also through greater accountability, transparency and supervision of European policies.
“We call on the EU and member states to use the opportunity of the revision of the Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020 to finally commit to policies of real convergence, based on social progress and on the safeguarding and promotion of each country's potential.
“We welcome the growing resistance against austerity programmes from people across Europe who are calling for the joint fight against neoliberal policies to continue, alongside a progressive development plan for all European citizens.
“Taking part in the European Semester Conference 2016 on February 16, I called for a new set of pro-people economic, social and environmental policies, which would replace the current framework, structure and priorities of the European Semester and the Fiscal Compact." ENDS