|Centre for Europe is looking for enthusiastic, motivated, pro-European
volunteers to help campaign on European issues such as education
and human rights.
This is an unpaid position but if you are looking to develop campaigning
and marketing skills and experience in a European context, this may be
the role for you.
It is based in Northampton but we also welcome interest from people
who are able to work online.
If interested, please e-mail Olga Ivannikova at firstname.lastname@example.org
with a covering letter and CV.
Archive for September, 2010
- finished my degree in Law
- got properly involved in party politics. I campaigned supporting our lovely Steve Goddard in Oxford East.
- got into professional modelling. Got people to pay me money for looking pretty
- worked as a teacher
-worked as a waitress
- started working as a Political Development Officer
- campaigned on Human trafficking
- learnt to bake!
- only lost 1 phone
- most importantly, I managed to keep my old good friends and met some new friends
So overall, it was a success. Thanks to all the lovely people who supported me immensely through really hard times. Also, I had a lot of good times thanks to the same lovely people.
So tomorrow I will be properly 22… What will next year have in store?
I’ve gone through the arguments on the new Directive in my previous post http://olgaivannikova.wordpress.com/2010/09/01/a-call-to-the-liberal-democrats/
Cameron’s comments at PMQs yesterday showed that the current government thinking is not to opt in to this. This may be our only chance to change it. The motion which I drafted up is on the ballot for emergency motions on Sunday.
Thank you to everyone who has helped and supported so far, but now we need to try to make sure that it is picked for Wednesday morning debate.
Ballot papers will be published in Sunday’s Conference Daily, and should be returned to the ballot box in the auditorium between 09.00 and 13.00 on Sunday 19th September. If you are in Liverpool on Sunday please support the fight against human trafficking and tell your friends
The motion itself:
‘Conference notes that on 31st August 2010 the Home Office announced that the Coalition Government will not opt in to the new draft EU Directive on Human Trafficking, which repeals Framework Decision 2002/629/JHA.
Conference notes that the new directive includes a series of measures protecting victims of trafficking, such as non-punishment of victims, measures to provide compensation and medical and psychological assistance.
Conference notes that on 16th June the Anti-trafficking monitoring body, comprising of charities such as Amnesty International, ECPAT UK and Anti-Slavery International described the Government strategy as ‘not fit for purpose’ and potentially discriminatory.
Conference believes that not opting in to the directive will harm international efforts to combat human trafficking.
Conference therefore resolves to:
1. Reaffirm the Liberal Democrats’ long standing opposition to all forms of human trafficking.
2. Call on Liberal Democrat ministers to argue strongly for the Coalition Government to opt in to the new directive.’
Debates about Europe are being framed through a nationalistic lens. Arguments supporting it are not being made or heard strongly enough.
We can blame ignorance, a euro-sceptic press, nationalists, and racists. But what can we do to ensure a proper fair debate on the subject?
First, let’s make a better case for Europe and describe some of many advantages it gives citizens of England.
EU allows the free movement of people on its territory so a British citizen can go on holidays or work and create business anywhere in 27 countries freely without having to go through a visa nightmare. Now, surely it’s good! Hold on.. It also means that… Europeans can come over here!! IMMIGRANTS! Some of them might not even be white! Or speak English! Some of them might prefer salami to British sausage! Don’t panic, take a deep breath. I will let you into a secret: Immigration creates businesses and therefore creates jobs. EU immigrants can’t initially claim benefits or take free houses and cars, whilst non-EU immigrants can’t claim at all. (I tried. ) They can however pay tax. Immigrants bring LOTS of money into the economy, enrich English society and bring lovely food with them.
The EU also ensures free movement of goods that removes trade barriers, allows a British citizen to buy pretty much anything from Europe (food, clothes, technology) costing much less than it would if there were trade obstacles. Above all, such close trading between countries helps all of us from atrocities such as World Wars 1 and 2 being committed again.
The EU gives the opportunity for countries to tackle international problems like human trafficking, organised crime and climate change. I don’t think there is a need for me to explain why this is important. England can’t possibly tackle these problems on its own.
The European community created the European Convention of Human Rights that English Government then enacted in a form of the Human Rights Act 1998. It gave British citizens written assurance of equal human rights such as freedom of expression, association, religion, private and family life.
The EU funds a lot of projects, like the regional structural fund, that give local communities more power and funds, particularly deprived communities.
There are problems, like democratic deficit and Common agricultural policy. England can only solve those problems if it is a part of the European Union while enjoying all the benefits.
So, Europe allows us to have free movement of people, goods, life in peace, to tackle organised crime and climate change, to enjoy equal human rights and it gives more funding to deprived communities. All these controversial things .
How do we explain this to euro-sceptics?
I am very proud to say that I was recently appointed as a Political Development Officer for the Centre for Europe, the main goal of which is to build understanding of Europe by promoting European education. At the moment I am in the process of developing a strategy. If you have any ideas or want to be involved in campaigning for Europe and European education, e-mail me on email@example.com Let’s educate the public about the advantages of Europe!
On the 31 August 2010, the Home Office confirmed that the government will not opt-in to draft European laws on human trafficking.
On 29 March 2010 the European Commission tabled a proposal for a new Directive on trafficking in human beings aimed at ensuring successful prosecution, better protection of and assistance to victims, and prevention of trafficking.,
Among the new measures are proposals for
- non-punishment of the victims for unlawful activities such the use of false documents in which they have been involved for being subjected to by traffickers.
- specific treatment for particularly vulnerable victims aimed at preventing secondary victimisation (no visual contact with the defendant, no questioning on private life, no unnecessary repetition of the testimony, etc.), police protection of victims, legal counselling also aimed to enable victims to claim compensation; special protective measures are envisaged for children such as holding interviews in a friendly environment.
- providing victims with shelters, medical and psychological assistance, information, interpretation services.
The new Directive can be see here http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do?reference=MEMO/10/108
The Home Office claims that ‘it will make very little difference to the way the UK tackles the problem’ but according to charities, including Amnesty International the UK anti-trafficking measures are ‘not fit for purpose’
A Home Office Spokesman went on to say that: ‘by not opting in now.. we.. avoid being bound by measures that are against our interests.’
Liberal Democrat MEP and anti-trafficking campaigner Catherine Bearder made a good point: “human trafficking doesn’t just affect other parts of the world. It isn’t just someone else’s problem; it’s our problem and this report shows it’s happening on the doorsteps of South East England.” “Women smuggled into the UK often don’t know they will be used as prostitutes, but are forced into selling their bodies to pay off a £30,000 ‘debt-bond’.”
Surely, tackling these problems is not against our interest? Also, I thought it was about protecting victims, rather than protecting the government.
So why wont our government ministers sign the damn thing?
In previous centuries liberals were instrumental to the abolition of the slave trade. Trafficking is modern day slavery.
Please, let’s remember what we are about as a party: we are in favor of Europe and internationalism; we are against organised crime, especially traficking. We are committed to social equality and helping most vulnerable people.
We are a democratic party so we as members can change party policy. I need help to submit and support an emergency motion at the conference to urge ministers to sign this directive. Please e-mail me firstname.lastname@example.org if you can help.