Sinn Féin - On Your Side

Charlie McCreevy's views on EU Services Directive still bad news for Irish workers and public services

4 April, 2006

Charlie McCreevy today told MEPs that "The European Parliament has clearly shown the way" on the controversial EU Services Directive.

Speaking in Strasbourg, Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún said:

"The fact that Commissioner Charlie McCreevy has wholeheartedly endorsed the view of the European Parliament on the controversial EU Services Directive should give the Socialist Group pause for thought.

"Let us be clear about it. The revised Commission proposal will still leave workers across Europe in competition with each other in a 'race to the bottom'.

"Apart from a certain number of exceptions the rules of the market and free and unfettered competition will take precedence over social protection.

"Fortunately the European Commission has taken on board some of the exclusions specified by the European Parliament, for example in the field of health. However, the scope of the Directive is still too broad, and leaves too much uncertainty about what is and is not included.

"The Commission's definition of Social Services is far too narrow, and needs to be broadened to cover the whole range of social services. And member states need to take a stand in defence of public services, many of which are still under threat.

"Those who are obsessed solely with cost reduction can rejoice at having such a doughty defender of their interests in Commissioner McCreevy. However, those who are interested in job security and quality public services should also take heart - the fight for a Europe of equals is far from over." ENDS

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