Cru­cial EU de­bate IN

Macclesfield Express - - EU REFERENDUM -

DAVID RUT­LEY, MAC­CLES­FIELD MP

IT has not been an easy choice for me, but the strong eco­nomic ar­gu­ments have driven my de­ci­sion to vote “re­main”.

Prior to be­com­ing an MP, I worked for 20 years as a se­nior ex­ec­u­tive with in­ter­na­tional com­pa­nies and learned first-hand how im­por­tant ac­cess to the EU Sin­gle Mar­ket is for the UK’s econ­omy.

I recog­nise that the EU is not per­fect and fur­ther re­form is re­quired. How­ever, while other op­tions to ac­cess the EU’s mar­kets would, in time, be ne­go­ti­ated if there is a vote to leave, this would not be granted freely and the out­come is not clear.

We do know, though, that key in­dus­tries vi­tal to our econ­omy want us to stay in the EU. As­traZeneca has around 3,000 highly skilled staff based in Mac­cles­field and was a lead­ing sig­na­tory of a re­cent let­ter from the life­science sec­tor sup­port­ing a re­main vote.

Small busi­nesses and con­sumers ben­e­fit from the sin­gle mar­ket too.

This is an im­por­tant de­ci­sion for the coun­try.

JANET JACK­SON, LABOUR COUN­CIL­LOR FOR MAC­CLES­FIELD CEN­TRAL

WITHIN the EU we will con­tinue to have pro­tec­tion for work­ers’ rights and con­di­tions in­clud­ing paid ma­ter­nity and pa­ter­nity leave, four weeks paid hol­i­day and pro­tec­tion for part time and agency work­ers.

Work­ing to­gether with the EU we can bet­ter pro­tect our na­tion from cli­mate change, re­duc­ing pol­lu­tion and im­prov­ing air and wa­ter qual­ity.

The EU is a mas­sive trad­ing area pro­vid­ing great op­por­tu­ni­ties for our busi­nesses and econ­omy, why would we turn our back on Europe? We can still con­tinue to trade with the rest of the world.

We have had peace on the con­ti­nent since the 1940s, brought about by co-op­er­at­ing and work­ing with the other coun­tries of Europe.

I value our safety and se­cu­rity. Ter­ror­ism, crime, cli­mate change, mi­gra­tion do not re­spect bor­ders. They all re­quire joined up thinking and co­op­er­a­tion from na­tions work­ing to­gether, not op­er­at­ing in iso­la­tion and act­ing apart.

The world is chang­ing fast and the EU has to change with it. Bri­tain needs to be at the front, lead­ing the charge for re­form. This means stay­ing in and fight­ing our corner.

We’re a big na­tion who helps make the rules, not a small coun­try look­ing in from the out­side.

DR MIKE SEWART, CON­SER­VA­TIVE COUN­CIL­LOR FOR POYNTON WEST AND ADLINGTON

IT’S close but my prej­u­dices as an oldie against the mass im­mi­gra­tion we are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing is not on the whole shared by younger peo­ple, the cit­i­zens of the fu­ture.

Though I would like to see im­mi­gra­tion re­duced, I am more con­cerned with that from places such as Su­dan, Eritrea, Afghanistan and Syria than I am from the other EU coun­tries.

Im­mi­gra­tion aside, just about ev­ery neu­tral non politico comes down on the side of say­ing that Brexit will dam­age our econ­omy. That will af­fect younger peo­ple.

I do not want to im­peril their fu­ture be­cause of my prej­u­dices there­fore my head over­rules my heart in vot­ing stay.

LES­LEY SMETHAM, CON­SER­VA­TIVE COUN­CIL­LOR FOR GAWSWORTH

THERE is greater op­por­tu­nity to in­flu­ence the de­ci­sion-mak­ing process from the in­side. We’ve pros­pered as mem­bers and we should not put our cur­rent re­cov­ery at risk.

One of the orig­i­nal in­ten­tions of EU mem­ber­ship was to stop wars be­tween Euro­pean coun­tries, this has been suc­cess­ful.

Peo­ple es­cap­ing from war torn coun­tries are hav­ing an im­pact on mi­gra­tion, this would hap­pen whether we are within the EU or out­side it and is a sep­a­rate is­sue.

When our neigh­bour’s lives are im­proved we all ben­e­fit.

The world is get­ting smaller: busi­nesses are be­com­ing more multi-na­tional and bor­ders are in­creas­ingly less rel­e­vant. Pol­lu­tion knows no bar­ri­ers. Free move­ment of those in the EU is prefer­able.

Choice of where to live in re­tire­ment or where to work may be re­duced if we leave. We have to work to­gether.

RICHARD WASTON, SEC­RE­TARY OF MAC­CLES­FIELD LABOUR PARTY

SCI­EN­TIFIC, cul­tural and tech­ni­cal col­lab­o­ra­tion have all been great div­i­dends from mem­ber­ship of thehe EU, which has al­soso pro­vided im­por­tant grants to our needy re­gions.

Leg­is­la­tion on work­ers’ rights is a con­sid­er­able achieve­ment for the Euro­pean Union.

The Euro­pean Par­lia­ment op­er­ates con­sen­su­ally, which I pre­fer, rather than ad­ver­sar­i­ally as ours does, al­though the EU Par­lia­ment should have more pow­ers and the Coun­cil of Min­is­ters less.

Im­mi­gra­tion within the EU should be dis­cussed calmly recog­nis­ing that our pop­u­la­tion den­sity is four times that of France but also recog­nis­ing im­mi­gra­tion’s many ben­e­fits.

If we left the EU and joined an­other large trad­ing block we would still be faced with a re­quire­ment to al­low free move­ment of labour, so this is­sue has to be solved by ne­go­ti­a­tion.

We are part of Europe cul­tur­ally and his­tor­i­cally and the UK would ben­e­fit even more if we had a more pos­i­tive ap­proach to­wards the EU to strengthen col­lab­o­ra­tion.

COUN­CIL­LOR AN­DREW ANDREWHALDANE HALDANE, CHAIR­MAN OF MAC­CLES­FIELD LIB­ERAL DEMOCRATS

A VOTE to leave the EU would be like driv­ing a hov­er­craft flat out over an eco­nomic cliff edge, hop­ing we miss the rocks at the bot­tom, avoid drown­ing and sail off into the sun­set pre­tend­ing that Bri­tan­nia once more rules the waves.

Like many of you, and lo­cal As­traZeneca em­ploy­ees look­ing anx­iously over their shoul­ders at a sim­i­lar Swedish fac­tory, my chil­dren’s liveli­hoods de­pend on global com­pa­nies trad­ing with Europe from a UK base.

An in­de­pen­dent Scot­land, re­main­ing in the EU, should do very nicely at our ex­pense.

If Boris’ power grab trashes our econ­omy, we leave and suf­fer, his fam­ily re­main wealthy. We get more back from EU funded re­search than we pay in.

Pre­mier League science of­ten re­quires multi­na­tional teams and we also gain 100 per cent of the cut­ting edge knowl­edge from each project we have a stake in, help­ing our small coun­try stay near the top of the hi-tech world.

Much EU fund­ing that we don’t get back is build­ing stronger economies on Rus­sia’s bor­ders so their peo­ples will have more jobs back home and Putin can’t stir up dis­con­tent.

That is safer and cheaper than an arms race.

Call­ing all this Project Fear in­sults our in­tel­li­gence.

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