Conservatives resist Brussels power grab on social housing

14-Jan-2014 @ 17:0

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Conservatives will this week oppose head-on a plan for the European Union to give itself powers to control the way Britain and other countries deal with homelessness.

The scheme is set out in a statement by the EU Commission and a resolution to be debated a voted by MEPs in Strasbourg on Thursday.

Conservative employment and social-affairs spokesman Anthea McIntyre said: "How we look after homeless people and what we do to tackle the problem is nothing at all to do with Brussels. Commissioners and MEPs should concentrate on the economic failings currently aggravating all Europe's social problems – and leave national and local governments free to deal with local issues proportionately."

The scheme before the parliament demands:

# "More-ambitious action" on homelessness at EU level

# Creation of a high-level expert group on EU homelessness strategy

# More EU taxpayer funding of "transnational exchanges with EU stakeholders"

Miss McIntyre, Conservative MEP for the West Midlands, said: "Of course housing is a very important social issue – but it should be entirely down to member states how to address it. Westminster and the town hall are the places where decisions need to be taken about investment in social housing – based on specific social needs.

"Local housing authorities and housing associations know what works and what can be afforded on their own patch. They do not need an instruction manual from Brussels."

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