The NO2EU: Yes to Workers Rights election campaign got its Welsh leg off to a flying start with a well attended meeting in the Pontypridd Museum on Thursday (10.4.14) evening.

The meeting hosted by the local Morning Star Readers & Supporters group heard from Rob Griffiths Communist Party General Secretary and lead candidate for the NO2EU.

Rob Griffiths argued why the people of Wales should lend No2EU: Yes to Workers’ Rights their vote On May 22 for workers’ rights, decent public services and peace.

The European Union is a threat to all those things. Across Europe unemployment is exploding while the EU intensifies its attacks on workers’ and trade union rights and the public services they rely on.

On top of that the EU is deploying troops in Africa on the pretext of humanitarian intervention while funding fascists in Ukraine to overthrow the elected government.

All these imperialist antics are being carried out in our name as, under the Lisbon Treaty, we are now EU “citizens.”

Public services, including postal, transport, energy, education and health services, are being privatised as part of the EU austerity agenda being imposed on member states by unaccountable EU institutions. But the voices of working people are not being heard.

The failure of the major parties to represent them has led to a political vacuum which is being filled by Tory outriders like UKIP or, worse, groups like the British National Party.

Yet the major parties, including the Green Party, continue to tell workers to put up with EU membership because of alleged benefits from EU legislation such as the working time directive and the agency workers’ directive.

But these very limited and fast-disappearing “rights” represent little more than a sugar-coating for the EU ‘liberalisation’ and privatisation agenda.

Rob Griffiths also challenged the claims by the main stream parties that Wales is a net beneficiary of EU funding; claiming that the benefit is marginal, if at all, and what sort of campaign is based on bragging up Wales’ poverty and putting out a begging bowl to the EU. This funding gap would more be more than bridged by a revised Barnet formula based on the countries needs.

NO2EU: Yes to Workers Rights is an electoral alliance involving the RMT trade union; the Communist Party; the Socialist Party; the Indian Workers Association and many independent socialists and progressives.

A vote for NO2EU on the 22 May is the only progressive option.