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The EU has done little to nothing for UK workers' rights

One of the tired talking points we heard during the referendum campaign has reared its head again, that being Labour’s main talking point: worker’s rights. The monochrome rags at the Labour Party have nothing of insight to say in regard to our exit from the European Union, so it’s no surprise they’re yet again running back to the argument that leaving the EU will put worker’s rights on the line. Nothing could be further from the truth.


The European Social Chapter is the main thing Remain campaigners draw upon often, but finer analysis of EU law actually reveals a fairly lukewarm programme of worker’s rights. Workers across Europe can be expected to be granted 28 days of paid leave, but the UK has an impressive 38. This is a common theme whenever we take a curt glance at the false claims of campaigners still attempting to rerun the arguments of 2016. They don’t acknowledge the laws on gender and race that the UK had established before joining the EU, showing this country to be a place of freedom and opportunity while the EU wallows in mediocrity.


Paid holiday legislation and women’s rights legislation including The Equal Pay Act were all rolled out in the UK before we joined the EU too and with the Conservative’s latest move to boost the Living Wage, it’s clear to me who’s leading the way for worker’s welfare and it certainly isn’t Europe. While our employment numbers go up, with talk of a recession a distant prospect, the Eurozone has shown no significant signs of picking up especially in Germany. Austerity continues to plague the failed Euro-Project, with youth employment figures falling below standard.


This notion that without EU law, the UK will fall from grace in the rights department holds no ground except some distant fear that we’re somehow going to repeal all the rights this country is so proud to have established. I find it odd that Remain campaigners wish for the superiority of EU law to continue, when any normal country outside the EU has the grace of having full control of our laws. We can only hope that the Prime Minister- who has maintained that the UK’s rights standards will not fall below standard- succeeds in his mission and we can put these tired arguments to rest and move onto the issues that really matter. A man can hope, can’t he?


William Parker


Member Views is a series of opinion pieces written by Blue Beyond members.

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