from Europe Issue 7/2003
month's shock by-election victory in Thurrock for the extreme right wing
British National Party (BNP) should shake us all out of the apathy which
seems endemic in voters. BNP victories in Oldham, Bolton and other
northern towns and cities are often attributed to tension between
immigrants living in ghettos and the local indigenous communities. The
BNP’s victory in rural East Anglia is a shock for all those who have
worked hard to build good community relations.
the BNP seems to be making ground in working class urban areas at the
expense of Labour voters, all three main parties have to be on their
guard. And here's a warning signal for us all in the Eastern Region. The
BNP is targeting rural areas because it claims to have a solution to all
the problems we are facing - rural depravation, the loss of key
services such as transport, shops and health care, and the future
livelihoods of farming. Don't be fooled!
BNP might sound convincing, but underneath its new found polices mask a
pernicious set of extreme views centred on race, immigration and asylum.
The BNP has neither a comprehensive manifesto covering all aspects of the
national economy nor any sound policies to manage the social fabric of
main political parties have a duty to expose the BNP and come up with
policies which overcome the anxieties of ordinary people.
Labour Government has failed to formulate and implement an asylum policy
that is based on strict control of those who may apply and vigilance at
our borders. Sadly, this failure has lead to a number of voters looking
for an alternative in the extreme right.
three major parties must now ensure that they spell out their policies to
the rural and urban voters of the Eastern Region and beyond so that there
is no room for extreme parties such as the BNP to divide and destabilise
our local communities.
EU ENLARGEMENT HEALTH TALKS
September, I addressed a health conference in Budapest on the challenges
facing the ten Central and Eastern European states when they join the
European Union next year .
a pan-EU healthcare system, which provides almost 500 million EU citizens
in twenty five countries with equal access to quality healthcare, is a
challenge for all stakeholders. I discussed how such a health system could
be funded in order to meet growing patient expectations, the uneven spread
of state-of-the-art medicines across EU markets and ways to close the gap
in the poorer health status of some of the accession countries.
enlarged EU faces the challenge of helping the accession countries to
upgrade and connect their health systems with those in the existing Member
States. This requires investment in manpower, infrastructure and training
of medical personnel from surgeons to technicians.
order to realise the EU's dream of creating a truly single market, we must
reform the delivery of healthcare so that every EU citizen is entitled to
the same treatment.
CAT AND DOG FUR
Anglia shoppers may be unwittingly encouraging a cruel trade in cat and
dog fur when they buy hats, gloves, shoes and cuddly toys. Over 2 million
cats and dogs are slaughtered each year in China alone, in order to
satisfy demand in Europe and it has been estimated that 66 tonnes of cat
and dog fur was imported into Britain in 2001.
animals are raised, and in some cases farmed, under deplorable conditions
and then killed either by stabbing or hanging. Occasionally, they are even
skinned alive. After being turned into full-length coats, fur trimmings,
or linings in ski boots and gloves, these goods are purposefully
mislabelled as rabbit, fox or simply as fake fur. This trade in cat and
dog fur is not only an act of barbaric animal cruelty, it is a blatant
display of consumer fraud since most of us are unaware of what we may be
a Council of Agriculture Ministers meeting in November last year, eight
ministers from the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Austria, the Netherlands
and Denmark strongly supported Sweden's request for an EU-wide ban on
sales, as well as imports and exports of cat and dog fur and skins.
However, EU Health and Consumer Protection Commissioner, David Byrne,
argued that this is not an EU-wide problem and that it should be up to
individual countries to address the issue.
disagree with the Commissioner as this is clearly a matter for EU control.
The EU's single market with open borders allows these goods to make their
way easily from one member state to another. While Italy has already
banned such sales, individual state action is not enough. Only a complete
EU-wide ban will put an end to this barbaric trade.
of outlawing the trade, the British government has so far simply welcomed
a voluntary labelling scheme which is being set up by the fur trade itself
as of this month. This scheme is not compulsory and will do nothing to
stop the trade in dog and cat fur.
the European Parliament, we have submitted a declaration requesting
the European Commission to immediately draft a regulation under internal
market powers to ban the import, export, sale and production of cat and
dog furs and skins across Europe.
urge consumers and animal lovers to put pressure on their local
Westminster MPs to raise this matter with the Government and to write to
Commissioner Byrne (European Commission, Rue de la Loi 200, B-1049
Brussels, Belgium) demanding that he take immediate action to ban the
import, export and sale of these products.
UEA SCHOOL OF PHARMACY
addressed students and lecturers at the University of East Anglia's new
School of Pharmacy, in Norwich, which opened its doors to the first intake
of 72 undergraduates this September.
a pharmacist with over thirty years experience, I welcomed the decision by
the Royal Pharmaceutical Society to open the school of pharmacy which is
currently the only one in the six counties of Eastern Region.
East of England currently has the highest vacancy rate for pharmacists
across Britain and I hope this new degree course will help to address the
pharmacy school is headed by a young and energetic team and I am sure that
alongside the medical school it will bring added distinction to the UEA,
which already has a very strong academic reputation in both science and
spoke on a variety of issues, including my involvement in the current
review of EU Pharmaceuticals Regulation, the future of the pharmaceutical
industry after enlargement of the EU and the pricing of cheap drugs for
Sep Enlargement Health Talks, Budapest
UEA School of Pharmacy
EUW Norwich & King's Lynn
Oct ACP-EU talks, Rome
Oct Interfaith Conference,
30-2 Nov Health Insurance Institute Conf, Sofia
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Promoted & Printed by Conservative MEPs in the EPP-ED Group in the European Parliament, Brussels: Khanbhai, Sturdy, Beazley & Van Orden