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Roger Helmer: Working Time opt-out safe - until European elections

Roger Helmer MEP East Midlands MEP Roger Helmer has commented in light of another failed attempt to scrap the Working Time Directive opt-out. Talks took place between the Commission, Parliament and Council of Ministers with the aim of hammering out a deal. But they collapsed on Tuesday morning and the issue now looks to have been put to bed until after the European elections.

Mr Helmer said:

"The result of this breakdown in negotiations is that the opt-out remains secure until the next time Labour MEPs have a chance to undermine it. Our right to choose our own working hours is safe for now.

Over three million people in the UK work more than 48 hours a week, and in these tough times it is more important than ever that people should have the free choice of how best to fend for their families. This outcome is good news not just for the East Midlands retained fire-fighters and care home workers who feared for their livelihoods: it is good news for ordinary workers throughout the area who just want to get on with their job.

The collapse in these talks is an opportunity to tear up the Working Time Directive. Over half of EU countries want to opt-out of the directive and two-thirds find it impossible to implement. The Working Time Directive is a duff directive and should be scrapped. We do not need a prescriptive Diktat from left-wing politicians dictating how many hours people should graciously be permitted by Brussels to work."


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