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MEP meets European Partners at ELDR Employment Seminar

March 23, 2004 3:00 PM

West Midlands MEP Liz Lynne today met with Liberal Democrat partners from across Europe to discuss important issues in employment legislation. The ELDR Employment Seminar has brought together MEP's from the Employment & Social Affairs Committee and national Liberal spokespeople in the field to review each others achievements and discuss future plans.

As well as chairing a discussion group on anti-discrimination legislation, Liz briefed the delegates on her work as European Parliament Health & Safety Spokesperson, where her contributions to the Physical Agents package have helped make the directives more practical. Liz tabled amendments which made sure that the vibrations directive took more account of the needs of the agricultural sector by extending the amount of hours a tractor could be driven, although it is still not ideal, and that the noise directive recognised the special characteristics of the leisure and entertainment industry.

Ahead of the seminar, Liz Lynne commented:

"This is an excellent chance for us to reflect, review and re-assess our priorities. By sharing ideas and discussing current issues we can come up with a co-ordinated way forward that will benefit employers & employees right across Europe."

"For example, I have been calling for comprehensive impact assessments to be done before any legislation is proposed. I am pleased that this is now going to be the case for all new legislation but it is important that these assessments take account of all the different sectors and Member States because the current one-size-fits-all approach simply does not work. We must also make sure that legislation is being implemented equally across the EU and if it isn't, find out why not. If it's because its unworkable legislation should be repealed, not added to.

"This forum also gives us a good chance to discuss at what level different decisions should be taken. There are some areas where it is right and proper to legislate at European Level, but in many instances it's better for national or even local government to take action. Talking through such matters will help to ensure that important decisions are made by the right people at the right time."